Rohan Samarajiva (Chair)

Rohan Samarajiva is founding Chair of LIRNEasia, an ICT policy and regulation think tank active across emerging Asia.  He was CEO for eight years from its inception in 2004.  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 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), a founder director of the ICT Agency of Sri Lanka (2003-05), 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 and as Advisor to Advocata, a Sri Lankan economic policy think tank.  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 five 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.

He was a member of the intergovernmental Joint Study Group on the India-Sri Lanka Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (2003) and chaired the GATS Advisory Committee of the Department of Commerce, Sri Lanka (2002-2004).  Samarajiva chaired the expert workshop on fixed-mobile interconnection for the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in 2000 and the first Digital Opportunity Forum for the Korea Agency for Digital Opportunity and Promotion (KADO) in 2006.

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