Rohan Samarajiva


Rohan Samarajiva is founding Chair of LIRNEasia. He was CEO for eight years from its inception in 2004. He was appointed as Chair of the ICT Agency of Sri Lanka, the apex body for information and communication technology within the government of Sri Lanka in April 2018.  He was one of its founding directors in 2003-05.

His most recent co-authored book (2013) is Information lives of the poor:  Fighting poverty with technology, published in Burmese, English, French and Spanish.  He was appointed to the experts’ committee by the President of Sri Lanka to draft the 2030 Vision of Sri Lanka in 2017.  He has been a member of the Data Privacy Advisory Group of UN Global Pulse since 2015.

Samarajiva was Team Leader at the Sri Lanka Ministry for Economic Reform, Science and Technology (2002-04) responsible for infrastructure reforms, including participation in the design of the USD 83 million e Sri Lanka Initiative.  He was Director General of Telecommunications in Sri Lanka (1998-99), Honorary Professor at the University of Moratuwa in Sri Lanka (2003-04), Visiting Professor of Economics of Infrastructures at the Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands (2000-03) and Associate Professor of Communication and Public Policy at the Ohio State University in the US (1987-2000).  Samarajiva was Policy Advisor to the Ministry of Post and Telecom in Bangladesh (2006-09).

He serves as Senior Advisor to Sarvodaya (Sri Lanka’s largest community based organization) on ICT matters, as Advisor to Advocata, a Sri Lankan economic policy think tank and as Non-Resident Fellow at Carnegie India.  Samarajiva is Chair of Communication Policy Research south, an initiative to identify and foster policy intellectuals in emerging Africa and Asia.  He is a member of the Board and former Chair of the Lanka Software Foundation.  He serves on the editorial boards of six academic journals.  He was recognized as an Internet Pioneer by the Sri Lanka Chapter of the Internet Society in 2015 and was the recipient of  the “Communication Research as an Agent of Change” award 2009 from the International Communication Association.

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