Singapore Pavilion at Expo 2017 Astana

‘Small City, Big Ideas’ was the theme of the Singapore Pavilion at Expo 2017 Astana. Exploring Singapore’s commitment to creating an ecosystem which supports the development of effective solutions for a sustainable future, this vibrant, innovative and terrarium-like 385 sq. m. pavilion was segmented into six zones.

Pico proudly provided turnkey services for the Singapore Pavilion, including pavilion operations and event management services. We also worked together with our creative partner Zarch Collaboratives on a number of levels.


The experience journey

Each of the pavilion’s six zones explored a different facet of Singapore’s push to become a green city:

‘The Tropics to the Steppes’: Upon entering the pavilion, visitors became immersed in an experience of Singapore’s tropical conditions – a slight heat coupled with fogged walls lined with plants took visitors into an otherworldly ‘white box’ where they learned about Singapore’s situation as a land-scarce country lacking in natural resources.

‘Powering Ahead’: Here, visitors entered the ‘heart’ of the terrarium. They were surrounded by a modular scaffolding carefully crafted into the walls of the chamber and were then treated to a multimedia experience of Singapore’s Energy Story.

‘Taking Charge: Big Ideas From a Small Nation’: Visitors stepped into an elevated space and got an overview of solutions Singapore is developing to its various challenges. These include public sector initiatives to implement solar energy and buildings that are built with energy efficiency in mind. In addition, this zone housed approximately 250 terrariums that were hand-made by youths from Beyond Social Services, a Singaporean charity dedicated to helping children and youth from less privileged backgrounds break out of the cycle of poverty. Each terrarium contained hand-written notes and little clay models of what these youths thought best represents Singapore.

‘Forging the Realities: Securing a Future for the Nation’: this rich multimedia experience provided an overview of the vibrant ecosystem of ‘cleantech’ companies based in Singapore. These companies provide solutions that cut across the generation, transmission and consumption of energy – all of which are conceived and realised in Singapore. The solutions were presented via high-tech communication devices. Visitors placed markers symbolising the generation, transmission and consumption of energy on an interactive table top which reflected both the unique challenges and corresponding solutions pertaining to these processes. Navigation panels then appeared, allowing visitors to experience even more multimedia content.

‘A Laboratory For The Future’: A culmination of their journey, visitors ended up in this reflective space, reminiscent of a greenhouse or a herbarium. The space was filled with terrariums neatly arranged on shelves, and visitors were invited to write their wishes for a more sustainable future on seed paper as a call to action.

‘Common Ground’: Here, a gentle set of stairs provided a view of the atrium, inviting visitors to linger, read, rest and reflect.


This comprehensive, insightful and engaging overview of Singapore won the hearts of visitors and the judges of two prestigious awards, winning:

- A Silver award in the Theme Development for Type C pavilions (less than 400 sq. m.) category at the Expo 2017 Official Participant Awards presented by the Bureau International des Expositions; and

- An Honourable Mention for Best Small Pavilion at the Expo 2017 Awards presented by EXHIBITOR magazine.

Pico is delighted to have been involved in the activation of seven pavilions at Expo 2017 Astana: the Belarus, Israel, France, Pakistan, Singapore, Sri Lanka and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization pavilions. These pavilions are now part of Pico’s continuously-expanding and award-winning world expo and specialised expo portfolio, which has reached almost 90 pavilions in size.