A Social Compact

What is a social compact?

In Singapore, it is an agreement between the government and the people on the roles and responsibilities each plays so that together they can shape the growth of society today and for the future.

Even if you have never heard of this term before, Singapore is very intentional in bringing this to the attention of all, posting these images at bus stops and transit hubs across the city.

As caring, thinking adults of our own nations, what would YOU say is the agreement on roles and responsibilities of your government and people?

The three parties making the agreement are:

  1. Individual and family
  2. Community
  3. Government

As I learn more about my host country, I wonder what values these three parties must share in order for there to be an agreement. The Office of the Director-General of Social Welfare lists these as the five shared values:

  • nation before community AND society above self
  • family as the basic unit of society
  • community support and respect for individuals
  • consensus, not conflict
  • racial and religious harmony

The graphic linked here aims to capture what Singaporeans say is important to them in their social compact. Which sayings connect with you on what is important to you as your social compact with your government? Are there other values that you think should be shared between a government and its people?

Please share in the comments. Maybe we, too, can move forward as individuals who value consensus, not conflict, and who embrace racial and religious harmony with support from the community and respect for individuals.

1 thought on “A Social Compact”

  1. Greetings Au and Eunice. Thanks for sharing.
    The Apostle Paul gives us a good foundation on which to build our social compact. “ 17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
    18 If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.
    19 Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” Romans 12:17-19
    Let’s strive to be peace makers! One love in Christ.


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