Columnists

March with intent and research with impact – SLAYS, you are important!

Views - 6239 Thursday, 16 March 2017 00:00

  Young scientist Shalini Thiruchittampalam was quite eloquent and with subtle humour articulated her research work ‘Probable chemical compounds from Sri Lankan flora for the treatment of neurodegeneration’ at the


Data that we have, situations that we do not see, decisions that we may not take…

Views - 5835 Thursday, 16 February 2017 00:00

A boy going to school on a misty morning up country. More than 500 schools in Sri Lanka are without basic sanitary facilities and only around 1,200 schools have science education going beyond Ordinary Level, while only 1.9% of GDP was use


Look, my streetlights are on!

Views - 6315 Thursday, 2 February 2017 00:10

I remember late Arthur C. Clarke used to write to the press quite often when we had power shortages – and there were many such instances I must say, indicating lit streetlights in Colombo in the middle of the day even in times of power short


Loosening ties and strengthening the economy

Views - 6231 Thursday, 19 January 2017 00:00

The Cabinet recently approved the guidelines for maintaining buildings in public institutions as green buildings and the proposal was made by President Maithripala Sirisena, in his capacity as the Minister of Mahaweli Development and Environment.&


A year in and a year out! What to do?

Views - 6925 Thursday, 5 January 2017 00:00

Dubai hosts one of the most expensive New Year’s Eve displays. Fireworks are launched from the Burj Khalifa,  the world’s tallest building     December 31st and January 1st are just two


Servants as Masters: Clouding judgment, stifling real growth

Views - 7011 Thursday, 22 December 2016 00:00

    Today we do have to ask some questions quite seriously from ourselves and others. What exactly are our goals that we have accepted and are supporting?  In Public Administration is it sacred conformance to circu


Researchers and elephants – we have a problem!

Views - 7137 Thursday, 8 December 2016 00:01

 John Dewey said that “every great advance in science has come from a new audacity of imagination” and these acts of imagination have to come from researchers. The numbers for Sri Lanka appear to be really worrying as the critica


From rhetoric to reality: Hot air to a hot climate!

Views - 7131 Thursday, 24 November 2016 00:01

Chunks of sea ice, melt ponds and open water are all seen in this image captured at an altitude of 1,500 feet by the NASA’s Digital Mapping System instrument during an Operation IceBridge flight over the Chukchi Sea on Saturday, 16


A City of Prosperity: A Tale of Two Commitments

Views - 8509 Thursday, 10 November 2016 00:00

It is interesting to view the Pittsburgh skyline at night from after going up the Duquesne incline, the means to which too is designed and provided. The sight and sounds demonstrate a city in business and today it is one of the most livable cities


Please don’t allow usual slips between the cup and the lip!

Views - 7517 Thursday, 27 October 2016 00:00

  The spectacle of a garbage dump burning and schools being closed and the residents moving around with handkerchiefs covering their noses and mouths at Badulla was news for more than one day. Even Air Force helicopters had t


Lest you forget! Please recycle from a damn good budget – S&T wise at least!

Views - 7914 Thursday, 6 October 2016 00:00

As a scientific citizen with a firm belief that the way out from this ‘economic near mess’ is by way of rapid use of science and innovation, I believe firmly that the Budget for 2016 presented last year had so many positive ideas and a


Colombo Resolution: Be resolute in action!

Views - 8715 Thursday, 15 September 2016 00:00

Former Sri Lankan Ambassador to South Africa and Singapore Shehan Rathnavale of COSTI/Ministry of Science, Technology and Research presenting the Colombo Resolution at STS Forum Sri Lanka 2016     An impo


Science and Technology for Society: The Colombo Gathering

Views - 9219 Thursday, 1 September 2016 00:08

In 2015 the STS Forum in Japan witnessed the presence of Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe     It is quite rare that we have big scientific forums in Sri Lanka. Even though we speak of MICE tourism, Sri


An Ode to a Father: Reading makes a full man!

Views - 7701 Thursday, 18 August 2016 00:00

  In the landscape of Sri Lanka today reading is a rarity. Public libraries or public resource spaces are much less visual in towns and city centres than hoardings of places to fill you up! Even though millions are spent at t


The Future We Want: Foresight for Sri Lanka

Views - 9283 Thursday, 19 May 2016 00:00

In the Oval Office, FBI Director Robert Mueller (centre right), Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano (far left) and other security advisers brief President Barack Obama (foreground, right) following the April 15, 2013, Boston Mara


The future of our nation - A future of men of science

Views - 7302 Thursday, 5 May 2016 00:00

 It is not necessary to be agitated the moment you see the heading, perhaps with the nation’s future only directed to be with men of science. We live in a world where issues are kept alive so as to give purpose to some people to live or


Why on earth are we not learning?

Views - 8576 Thursday, 21 April 2016 00:00

The problem of solid waste in Colombo and the suburbs has been a burning issue for many decades. The number of meetings, court proceedings, workshops and symposia and internal and external reports on managing this problem should total out to a si


Banking the intangible – An asset class that really matters

Views - 7248 Thursday, 7 April 2016 00:00

Courtesy: WIPO/Sébastien Couture     Our economy is in interesting times but I wonder for those who are at the centre of the process whether it is a time for enjoying. Waking up to find As having become Bs


Making the future happen

Views - 6385 Thursday, 24 March 2016 00:00

  Our society needs to be alive for science and technology. While we re-enact cricket matches and relive old melodies via musical extravaganzas, we effectively  demonstrate our preference for a few areas with limited potential


Seeking our own manager type: Serendipitous Manager

Views - 6223 Thursday, 10 March 2016 00:00

  In Government organisations Wednesday is the Public Day, where the public come into seek redress to their multitude of issues. Government officials are supposed to be present on this day ready to serve diligently the public. You wil


Toilet 2.0: Going circular with our toilet manners!

Views - 6066 Thursday, 25 February 2016 01:04

It may be that a good morning is not quite good if one cannot let go of the waste load and the morning ritual of cleansing is an essential element of daily life. Depending on the way in which you carry out the task, you may identify yourself eithe


The dependency of our independence

Views - 4694 Thursday, 11 February 2016 00:05

   Sri Lanka quite proudly celebrated the 68th anniversary of her independence and did introduce quite a few important variants too to the way it was carried out. There is no question, like individuals, a nation too can cry out f


Giving space to Innovate: from corridors of malls to innovation space

Views - 5002 Thursday, 28 January 2016 00:01

Our youth appears to have a problem, though they may not exactly understand it. In the new Colombo, hanging out perhaps is a common sight of course with the smart phone in hand and with wires dangling down from ears. I am quite sure that they are


A brick for science: Giving with a purpose!

Views - 5099 Thursday, 14 January 2016 00:00

  SLINTEC                   Californian Science Centre                 Californian Science Centre          


Shaping for a resilient tomorrow: Revolutionary resolutions

Views - 4817 Thursday, 31 December 2015 00:00

  This is the time for retrospection, reflection and resolutions, unless of course you are fixed on dry cleaning for that perfect midnight bash. The year 2016 is just around the corner and we are going to get a fresh 31,622,4


Save my economy: On with Triple Helix!

Views - 5357 Thursday, 17 December 2015 00:00

  A recent post-budget meeting reminded me again how ignorant our industry captains are about what universities can do, are doing, and the importance of connectivity to them. The ignorance stretches to what courses we are tea


Time for Triple Helix is NOW

Views - 5023 Friday, 4 December 2015 00:00

With our ears glued to the media, some of us listened to the budget, and some had the opportunity to listen it to from the parliament gallery.  It was to be an out-of-the-box budget anyway, and, hence, many an expectation.  Of course our


Need of the hour – if not the second!

Views - 5239 Thursday, 19 November 2015 00:00

   The Kennedy School of Government in the US has an annual task of identifying top 25 innovations in government. For better or worse someone should start doing this exercise for our system too. An honest result can do a world of


Save my cuppa: The tea tattle

Views - 5456 Thursday, 5 November 2015 00:00

Both the plantations and the factory as key parts of this ecosystem needs to be shaken up if Lipton’s endowment is to continue to prosper in Sri Lanka   My morning cup is having trouble. The tea industry is maki


A dashboard for the nation

Views - 6015 Thursday, 22 October 2015 00:00

 The LSF team with members of the IT team of COSTI   What you cannot measure you cannot manage is an old adage. However, this can be questioned many a time in Sri Lanka as managing minus data appears to be the norm. When


Today's Columnists

Maximum Residue Level: Dilemma of agricultural product exporters in Sri Lanka

Wednesday, 19 September 2018

Due to increased emphasis on consumer health, majority of developed countries such as EU, Japan and the US insist on MRL testing of food items which has to be done by the exporter. The Codex Alimentarius Commission which is an inter-governmental bod


East Container Terminal blunder: Learn from Chinese

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Minister for Ports and Shipping Mahinda Samarasinghe informed the press in August that Cabinet has approved the development of East Container Terminal (ECT) of Colombo Port by the Ports Authority. According to approval: nPorts Authority would develop


President Sirisena, playing with fire, must take note that smoke will get into his eyes

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Penchant for playing with fire President Gamaralalage Sirisena has always had a penchant for playing with fire. He did fire-play at the local government elections when he made a disastrous U-turn and went round country blasting the party and its lea


Response to claims that Sri Lanka was in a ‘debt trap’ in 2014 due to ‘Chinese loans’

Monday, 17 September 2018

Several Western analysts have carried out a relentless media campaign in keeping with their own geopolitical agenda, to suggest that China was luring Sri Lanka into a carefully engineered debt trap.


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