Siew Chin Chua


What do you do?

I am a tropical forest ecologist at the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research and Technology. In my research, I seek to understand how changes in demographic of forest tree species are related to ecosystem functions, such as nutrient cycling and carbon sequestration. My work has taken me to majestic inland Dipterocarp forests, funky peat swamp forests and mangroves. Currently, I am investigating the natural regeneration of peat swamp forests in Brunei.

Where are you originally from?



Scientist at work, but artist at heart.

What inspires you?

Nature. I think there are few people who could remain unstirred, if given a chance to stand on top of a mountain, and feel the solitude and vastness around them. However, people are spending less time outdoors, and becoming more disconnected emotionally with the natural environment. I say “emotionally”, as we are of course, physically nourished by Nature. Part of what inspires me, is to re-draw that connection between people and their environment, and art provides a way to speak to people’s heart.