Announcing the SCF Arbiters Commission 2024

January 03, 2024

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SCF is pleased to announce the formation of the SCF Arbiters Commission (SCF ARB).

Since the announcement of SCF’s Arbiter Policies in June 2023, there has been increasing interest in local chess arbitration. With it comes a greater urgency to refine the existing policies and build the expertise of our local arbiters, so as to support the increased operational needs of SCF and other local organisers.

The Arbiters Commission aims to represent the interests of Singapore’s licensed arbiters, and drive SCF’s Arbiter Policies forward with the objective of improving the overall expertise and well-being of our arbiters.

SCF ARB 2023-2025 consists of:

  • NA Lau Yan Han (SCF ARB Chairperson, SCF Honorary Secretary General)
  • NA Ong Yujing (former SCF Board Member)
  • NA Bernard Carleton Lim (SCF Rating Officer)
  • FA Kelvin Wee
  • FA Hazel Liu Yang
  • FA Siew Kai Xin
  • NA Triszen Phua

The Commission may also engage special advisors beyond the existing members, including some of Singapore’s most experienced International Arbiters, where it deems necessary.

SCF ARB’s vision for 2023-2025 are:

1. Sustainable local arbiter seminar system

The last FIDE Arbiter seminar in Singapore was in April 2023 in collaboration with ASEAN Chess Academy. Since then, there is still a significant demand for National Arbiter (NA) certification and refresher seminars, which SCF commits to organise annually.

SCF ARB’s objective is to organise the first NA seminar in early 2024 (in preparation for the National School Individuals), a second one in late 2024 (in preparation for the SCF Diamond Jubilee events), with the long term goal of sustaining at least one seminar every year.

The upcoming NA seminar shall tentatively be on 2-3 March 2024, 9am – 10pm each day. The commission is currently working with potential co-organisers to secure suitable venues, with the syllabus and mode of assessment to be confirmed.

2. Review and streamline of existing arbiter policies

SCF ARB is committed to continuously review and improve on existing local arbiter policies.

In particular, while the refresher requirements implemented in June 2023 were well intentioned, they have proven to be operationally challenging to execute and confusing to the general public. SCF ARB’s priority is to streamline the requirements while not losing the original objective of setting a high standard. The existing 31 March 2025 deadline for all local arbiters to clear a refresher course shall remain as is, unless SCF ARB deems necessary for it to be delayed.

The Commission also aims to improve on local arbiter / assistant certifications, such as mandating training for tournament assistants prior to major SCF events (with suitable remuneration rates for trained assistants) and reviewing existing Candidate Arbiter requirements.

3. Assisting the growth of local arbiters

While the immediate priority is to improve on the local arbiter ecosystem, it is equally important to assist the growth of our arbiters by looking outwards. SCF ARB’s aim for the coming year is to nominate and send deserving local arbiters for at least 2 official regional / international events in 2024, such as the ASEAN Age Groups and Olympiad 2024.