Programme Concept

Programme Concept


7  September 2016 – Inauguration
Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapakse  Theater, Colombo, Sri Lanka

8-10 September 2016
Waters Edge, Colombo, Sri Lanka

Theme: Harnessing Science Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development


Sri Lanka STS Forum is inspired by the annual Japanese STF Forum, the most recent of which the Hon. Prime Minister of Sri Lanka attended as a keynote speaker at the inauguration in Kyoto.

The main objectives of the Forum will be to:

  • Foster Excellence in Science and Technology
  • Enable equitable and inclusive development through STI
  • Promote high-tech industries
  • Integrate Sri Lankan industries into global value chain



In order to achieve the above objectives the Forum will discuss the role of Science and Technology in society especially in relation to Sustainable Development Goals, explore opportunities arising from S&T and address barriers to using S&T in solving problems of the Sri Lankan society. It will also provide a mechanism for high-level open discussion amongst Sri Lankan Expatriate scientists, foreign scientists and those living in Sri Lanka, to build consensus and networks to resolve issues in the use and application of science and technology in the country.

Layout of the Forum

The Forum will consist of an inauguration followed by three days of plenary/keynotes and break-out sessions. It is expected to address themes such as the role of Science and Technology in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s), Citizen Science, Advance Technology based solutions, Capacity building in Science, Technology and Innovation, Science and Technology funding and the Establishment of a Sri Lankan Innovation Platform.

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Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapakse Theater, Colombo Waters Edge, Colombo

The opening session will be on the evening of 7th September 2016, at Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapakse Theater in Colombo. The opening ceremony will be attended by His Excellency the President and the Hon. Prime Minister and will be followed by Keynote addresses by various experts in the field of Science and Technology. Approximately 1000 invitees will attend this ceremony.

On 8th of September there will be an inauguration of the Conference attended by the Hon. Prime Minister. The keynote address will be made by Dr. Shamshad Akhtar, Executive Secretary UNESCAP. During the Plenary Sessions allocated for the day, leading International Scientists will address the gathering inspiring Sri Lanka towards Science Technology and Innovation for sustainable industrial development and quality infrastructure establishment.

In parallel leading International Scientists will interact with undergraduates of Universities and Sri Lankan High School students inspiring them to engage in science.

On 9th September there will be five Break-up groups devoted to the themes: a) STI for Sustainable Development Goals, b) Citizen Science, c) Research and Innovation Eco-system, d) Natural Resources and Emerging Technologies and e) Nanotechnology. Three short presentations under each of these themes will lead to Panel discussions that will enable the development of the expected outcomes. Extensive interaction between Expatriate Sri Lankan Scientists, Scientists domiciled in Sri Lanka and Sri Lankan Industry and government agencies is expected during the breakout sessions.

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10th September will be devoted to further discussions on way forward and wrap up with a Colombo Resolution on incorporating Science Technology and Innovation for the development of the country.

The total number of participants at the Forum will be around 500, out of which about 100 will be from foreign countries, including eminent Foreign and Sri Lankan expatriate scientists, who will attend as key resource persons and share their knowledge and experience in science and technology development. Sri Lankan participants (about 400 in number) would include scientists, government officials and private sector industrialists, entrepreneurs, inventors, innovators, and undergraduates from Universities and High School students.

Major outcomes of this Forum would be:

  1. Colombo Resolution
  2. A strategic direction for optimal integration of STI for social empowerment and sustainable development of Sri Lanka, that would:
    • Align STI with SDG agenda
    • Reorient the existing STI eco system
    • Foster advance technologies and integrate ‘technology drivers’ and ‘test beds’ for national industrial development
    • Develop international partnerships and collaborative research and enhance Science diplomacy
    • Develop a citizen oriented science culture
    • Attract a new generation of transnational investors for STI in Sri Lanka