Third webinar on Digital Platform held with constructive participation of Sri Lankans in the UK

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The National Science Foundation is in the process of constructing a digital platform with technical support of SLAASCOM with a view to harnessing Sri Lankan expatriate scientists, professionals and entrepreneurs for national development. Two webinars in this connection were held with active participation of and valuable contribution from Sri Lankans in Australia and America.


The third webinar was held on 24 September, 2020 under the chairmanship of Prof. Ranjith Senaratne of NSF and Prof. Dilanthi Amaratunga of Global Disaster Resilience Centre at University of Huddersfield, UK made a brief presentation at the outset, setting the stage for a focused discussion. There was constructive participation of both senior as well as up-and-coming Sri Lankan scientists, academics and professionals in the UK who made a valuable contribution by way of ideas, suggestions and propositions to make the platform impactful and sustainable. They expressed keen interest and desire to contribute to capacity and critical mass building and competency enhancement in several strategically important areas, including renewable energy, disaster management, higher education, artificial intelligence, intellectual property rights, development of smart cities, transformational research, tapping global cluster communities, knowledge transfer seminars and improvement of quality and standard of Sri Lanka journals.


Prof. Athula Sumathipala (Professor of Psychiatry, Keele University, UK and Chairman of National Institute of Fundamental Studies), Prof. I.M. Dharmadasa (Senior Staff Grade Professor, Sheffield Hallam University), Prof. Thrishantha Nanayakkara (Reader in Design Engineering and Robotics, Imperial College London), Prof. Mahesan Niranjan (Professor of Electronic and Computer Science, University of Southampton), Prof. Terrance Fernando (Professor, Director - THINKlab, University of Salford), Mr Sarath Wijesinghe   (Electrical Engineer, MIET, C.Eng), Prof. Kierthi Devendra (Director, KD Engineering Consultancy), Prof. Danture Wickramasinghe (Proferssor of Management and Accounting at Glasglow University) and Dr Dilirini De Silva (Borysiewicz Biomedical Sciences Fellow/Bioinformatician, University of Cambridge) along with Prof. Dilanthi Amaratunga (Professor of Disaster Risk Reduction, University of Huddersfield) contributed immensely to the success of the event.


In view of time constraints, a large number of professionals and scientists in the UK sent their comments and observations to the chat box which have been gratefully received. They will be taken into account in formulating strategies and programmes for the platform.  


Dr Thamara F. Dias, Actg. Director General of NSF delivered the welcome address while Mr. Ashique Ali of SLASSCOM spoke on the key features of the digital platform. Mr. Shantha Siri, Head, International Affairs Division, ably supported by Ms Thilinakumari Kandanamulla, Scientific Officer coordinated the event.



List of participants

Webinar recording: