Catapult, Southeast Asia’s first shared executive learning centre, opens in Rochester Commons

Contact Us
Olivia Lim
168 Robinson Road #30-01 Singapore
Singapore 068912 

Catapult, Southeast Asia’s first shared executive learning centre purpose-built to groom next-generation leaders, has opened its doors at Rochester Commons, the new mixed-use development in Singapore’s one-north precinct. Developed and managed by CapitaLand Development (CLD) in line with the Singapore government’s vision to create world-class learning spaces in one-north, Catapult offers an immersive and experiential learning environment with state-of-the-art facilities to reinvent in-person, online and hybrid interactions in a post-pandemic hybrid world.

Mr Tan Yew Chin, CEO, CLD (Singapore), said: “Catapult is strategically located in Singapore’s one-north precinct, home to a vibrant cluster of renowned business schools and institutes for higher learning. Designed based on the principles of innovation and openness, Catapult is specially created to fulfil the requirements of corporate universities, learning and development units of organisations and executive business schools for training local, regional and global C-suites and high-potential executives. After the profound changes to the world of work brought about by COVID-19, Catapult’s timely opening serves to meet the new training needs of the modern workforce, preparing them to stay agile while astutely handling the complexities of the current business climate. Adopting new learning technologies and a strong curriculum delivered by highly skilled trainers, Catapult is committed to create extraordinary experiences that engage and enrich the learners, in line with its goal of grooming executives to become the leaders of tomorrow.”

Dr Beh Swan Gin, Chairman, Singapore Economic Development Board, said: “Catapult’s state-of-the-art facilities and training partners are an important addition to the learning and development ecosystem in Singapore. It will help to address the needs of companies based here and the region to train their leaders and executives, as they seek to thrive in a more complex global environment today.”

The Catapult Way – The neuroscience of learning and motivation

Catapult bases its experiential learning approach around The Neuroscience of Learning and Motivation. It is founded on three neuroscience principles – how emotion, experimentation, and social interaction can enhance the learning experience. The Catapult Way facilitates not only the acquisition of information but also stresses interactive application of principles that leads to greater retention and utilisation of what is learned. With a targeted focus on leadership, innovation and managing energy for peak performance, participants engage in learning journeys that allow them to uncover clear solutions and produce effective results. These learning journeys are curated by best-in-class knowledge providers, academics from global business schools and subject matter experts.

Catapult’s curriculum and training programmes also tap on adventure simulation and gamified business learning approaches to encourage a shift in how individuals view and solve problems – applying tools from logical thinking to design thinking. These programmes help learners to develop the agility and ability to analyse information so that they can lead and motivate their teams to solve challenges of the future. For example, through gamified business learning, participants can learn the art of negotiation through a game of cards or drawing on theatrics to drive impactful communications.

Smart campus with state-of-the-art facilities and technologies

Designed by Gensler and occupying Level 3 and a part of Level 2 of Rochester Commons’ office tower, Catapult boasts several standout facilities, including Singapore’s first commercial 180-degree and 360-degree immersive studios featuring the latest Igloo immersive technology from the United Kingdom and top-of-the-range built-in sound system. The 180-degree immersive studio is equipped with a high-definition LED wall and three hybrid-ready video cameras, while the 360-degree immersive studio features wall projection with two hybrid-ready video cameras. Another notable facility at Catapult is the hybrid-ready 200-seat auditorium, which allows both in-person and online learners to be virtually connected and engaged for a seamless learning experience. With this hybrid capability, virtual participants will feel like they are part of the physical session even though they are online. Catapult also offers 26 learning studios, an executive boardroom and a media creation studio – all fitted with high-quality sound proofing, acoustics and cameras that facilitate real time live streaming.

Neuroscience principles are also incorporated into Catapult’s built design to create a conducive learning environment that includes natural lighting from floor-to-ceiling glass windows, overlooking abundant outdoor greenery. In addition, artificial intelligence is incorporated into its space management system to ensure a healthy airflow and enhance temperature controls. This helps to optimise energy usage and reduces carbon footprint.

About 40% of the 54,000-square-foot campus is set aside for collaborative spaces to encourage socialising amongst learners and knowledge providers. Sharing the same building as business hotel, Citadines Connect Rochester Singapore, also allows Catapult learners from overseas to stay and learn in a single location for greater convenience. Operated by CapitaLand Investment Limited’s wholly-owned lodging business unit, The Ascott Limited, Citadines Connect Rochester Singapore offers 135 rooms catering to both short and long stays, featuring a mix of studio units, including premier units with a well-equipped kitchenette and washer-dryer and deluxe units with garden access.

Dr James Andrade, Head, Learning & Innovation, Catapult, CLD (Singapore), said: “Research suggests that an individual can forget as much as 70% of what was taught during training after a day, unless action is taken to retain it. The Catapult Way facilitates ‘stickiness’ for our learners by employing principles of neuroscience to enhance the learning process and our state-of-the-art facilities and knowledge partners to make it immersive and engaging. By incorporating interactive activities into our curriculum that results in Deep Learning, our learners are more likely to retain knowledge while enjoying the learning experience in the process.”

“Another point is how individuals and companies are consuming information and implementing training in a post-pandemic world. The pandemic brought about an unprecedented set of obstacles to businesses, and this has directly impacted how training is conducted. Catapult has navigated these challenges by incorporating flexible and innovative solutions to conduct training online. Coupled with our smart campus, we are well-positioned to meet the hybrid learning needs of our clients in a post-COVID world.”

Building an ecosystem for future learning

Since its soft opening on 1 July 2022, Catapult has hosted diverse learning events by knowledge providers and corporate clients that make creative use of its facilities, such as immersive virtual reality simulations in its 180-degree immersive studio. In addition, Catapult has welcomed IMD Southeast Asia Executive Learning Centre (IMD) as a partner, which has since hosted a series of executive education programmes on campus.

Misiek Piskorski, Dean of IMD Asia and Oceania, said: “Catapult offers a learning ecosystem which brings best-in-class providers together to advance the development of leaders in Singapore and in Southeast Asia. We are extremely proud to be the anchor business school and look forward to collaborating with numerous organisations in the ecosystem to create truly developmental experiences for global executives and alumni.”

Catapult will also welcome the Human Capital Leadership Institute as a partner from November 2022.