Roshanka Ranasinghe

expert on Climate change impacts on coasts, coastal risk, coastal morphodynamic modelling, coastal zone management LinkedIn profile

Roshanka Ranasinghe is Professor of Climate Change Impacts and Coastal Risk at the Department of Water Science and Engineering, UNESCO-IHE and Advisor (Strategic Modelling) at Deltares. He also holds a Visiting Professor position at the Australian National University.

Prof. Ranasinghe obtained his Bachelor of Science Engineering (1st Class Honours) from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka in 1993 and his PhD in Coastal Engineering and Oceanography from the Centre for Water Research, University of Western Australia in 1998. Since then he has worked in the Academic and government sectors in Australia, USA and The Netherlands.

To date, Prof. Ranasinghe has published over 120 peer reviewed articles and delivered more than 20 invited presentations (in Australia, Netherlands, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Sweden, France, USA, Portugal). He is regularly invited to chair thematic sessions at high impact international coastal engineering/sciences conferences (International Conf. on Coastal Engineering; Coastal Dynamics; Coastal Sediments) and, over the last two decades, has established highly productive research collaborations with reputed scientists and engineers from USA, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Netherlands, France, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, South Africa, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand, and Vietnam.

Prof. Ranasinghe has won 4 National level prizes for excellence in scientific research and has attracted approximately USD 12 million in research funding from competitive funding schemes in Australia, EU, Netherlands, USA and international agencies. He is a regular reviewer of manuscripts for top international journals (incl. Nature, Journal of Geophysical Research, Coastal Engineering, Marine Geology, Continental Shelf Research, Climatic Change) and has been a member of over 10 strategic scientific steering committees, including being a member of the Australian National Committee on Coastal and Ocean Engineering. He is regularly invited to provide expert advice on coastal zone management and adaptation to climate change by national and local governments and international agencies (eg. Asian Development Bank, World Bank, UNESCO).

To date Prof. Ranasinghe has supervised/co-supervised 7 Post-doctoral fellows and 16 PhD candidates and numerous MSc students. His research interests are:

  • Climate change impacts on coasts and Coastal risk
  • The interaction of coastal hydrodynamics and morphology (i.e. morphodynamics) at medium (days) to long (century) time scales and associated coastline and nearshore morphological change at medium (~ 100m) to large (~100km) spatial scales,
  • Development of engineering tools that can provide probabilistic estimates of coastal hazards to aid contemporary risk based coastal zone management/planning efforts.
  • Scale aggregated modelling of long term coastal evolution
  • Development of innovative coastal risk assessment methods
  • Tidal inlet processes
  • Satellite and Video based techniques for coastal monitoring and data assimilation methods

Working experience

2014-present UNESCO-IHE Professor
2009-present Deltares Senior Specialist on Strategic Modelling
2008-2013 UNESCO-IHE/Delft Univ. of Technology Associate Professor
2005-2007 Dept. of Environment and Climate Change, Sydney, Australia Senior Scientist
2000-2004 Dept. of Infrastructure Planning and Natural Resources, Sydney, Australia Senior Coastal Officer
1998-2000 Oregon State University (USA)/ Univ. of New South Wales (Australia) Post doctoral fellow