The Singapore Eye Research Institute (SERI) was conceived with the foresight of a visionary leader, the late Professor Arthur Lim. Professor Lim, who is the founder and first Medical Director of the Singapore National Eye Centre, had keenly pursued the idea of an eye research institute in a period of time when research was hardly in vogue in Singapore.Established in 1997, SERI is Singapore’s national research institute for ophthalmic and vision research. SERI’s mission is to conduct high-impact eye research that prevents blindness, low vision and major eye diseases common to Singaporeans and Asians. Over the last decade, SERI has conducted landmark research projects that have led to tangible outcomes, patient benefits, and success stories. It has paved the way for significant improvements in how eye diseases are treated and prevented, not just for Singaporeans or Asians, but on a global scale.
At its inception, SERI saw a national remit in ophthalmic and vision research, and till today, despite the demarcations introduced by the healthcare clustering system, SERI bridges the clusters with a presence in each cluster. SERI ensures that its facilities and resources are open to researchers across Singapore so that the greatest benefit may be obtained from what is a relatively small clinical ophthalmology catchment area in Singapore.
SERI has grown from a founding team of five in 1997 to a faculty of more than 238 staff, encompassing clinician scientists, scientists, research fellows, PhD students and support staff. This makes SERI one of the largest research institutes in Singapore, as well as the largest eye research institute in the Asia Pacific region. SERI has also over 230 adjunct faculties from various eye departments, biomedical institutes and tertiary centres in Singapore. SERI has published an impressive array of 4,504 scientific papers, and has secured external peer-reviewed competitive grants worth more than $360 million. As of August 2021, SERI’s faculty has been awarded with more than 755 national and international prizes and filed 145 patents.
As the research institute of the SNEC, and directly affiliated to the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore, as well the Duke-NUS Medical School, SERI undertakes vision research in collaboration with local clinical ophthalmic centres and biomedical research institutions, as well as major eye centres and research institutes throughout the world.
SERI ranks first globally in terms of eye publications per capita, ahead of the US, UK and Japan.
With its impressive publication track record, SERI is comparable to renowned eye institutes, both regionally and internationally.