Are there any prominent ethnic enclaves in Singapore?

I defined a residential enclave as a subzone with high ethnic concentraction: the largest percentage of people within an ethnic group living in the same area as compared to other groups. Prominent enclaves are those which additionally have a high population count

While there is no data on the spatial distribution of ethnic groups down to postal codes, it can been observed that there are still disproportionately more of certain races concentrated in certain geographical areas.

Planning areas are the main urban planning and census divisions of Singapore delineated by the Urban Redevelopment Authority. These 55 planning areas are further subdivided into subzones.


% of people within an ethnic group living in a subzone

Singapore's most mature and populous housing estates are in Tampines, Bedok, Woodlands and Jurong. Across all ethnic groups, these areas have high percentage of people within each ethnic group living there.

All ethnic groups have similar distribution spread, not deviating far from the theoretical average of 0.43% of race population living in each subzone. The Malays are the least spread group across Singapore, mainly concentrating in Tampines, Bedok and Woodlands. For the Chinese, Indians and Others, in many subzones, having a high 'concentration' does not correlate with having a high 'representation'.


Difference in share of national population and subzone population

Because the population of the majority race is disproportionate to the minority race, there will almost always be more Chinese living in a subzone. In fact, the Chinese have the highest population count in all subzones, with the exception of Little India

To more accurately measure representation, the percentage of people belonging to each group for Singapore as a whole is subtracted from the percentage of people within a subzone belonging to the same group. A group is highly represented if its share of the subzone population is larger than its share of the national population for Chinese (74.3%), Malays (13.3%), Indians (9.1%) and Others (3.3%).

Chinese: Most populous

Malays: Most concentrated in mature estates

Indians: Interspersed with Chinese

Others: Most dissimilar residential areas

Spatial diversity of ethnic groups

Explore the ethnic makeup of multiracial Singapore by living spaces

Hover over the dots to locate subzone location on the map.

Sort by: