Udan Fernando, PhD (Amsterdam)

Executive Director

Over the past 20 years, Udan has held leadership positions in Sri Lankan development organizations, functioned as a freelance consultant in Sri Lanka and abroad and held a senior staff position in a research & consultancy organisation in the Netherlands with work experience in Europe, East & West Africa and South East Asia. Udan has had academic and professional training in management, law, labour studies and international development cooperation. He has taught in universities in Sri Lanka and the Netherlands as a visiting academic.

Areas of interest: Aid Policy, Development Cooperation, Communication for Social Change/Development, Strategic Planning and Organisation Development

Kishani Cader, ACMA
Head of Finance and Administration

Kishani is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (ACMA). She has over 20 years experience in all fields of financial management, research and consultancies. She is responsible for the overall management of finance and administration.

Karin Fernando, MA (Brandeis)

Senior Research Professional

Karin has a Master of Arts in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University, USA. She has over 10 years’ experience implementing development projects and environmental management with NGOs and multilateral agencies, as well as monitoring the impacts of development projects. At CEPA, she is responsible for managing the research and policy programme, working on the environment and infrastructure thematics. 

Areas of interest: sustainable development, environmental and natural resource management and impact monitoring

Kulasabanathan Romeshun, MA (Colombo)

Senior Research Professional

Romeshun has worked in the development field for the past twenty years in government and funding organizations. He has a Master’s in Financial Economics from the University of Colombo. As Team Leader for the Facets of Poverty programme, Romesh and his team are responsible for collating messages on poverty, inequality and prosperity, drawing from the research and advisory activities of the CEPA thematic teams. In addition, the Facets of Poverty Team works on poverty measurement and starting to look at the impact of macro factors on poverty.

Nilakshi De Silva, MPA (Princeton)    

Senior Research Professional

Nilakshi has a Masters degree in Policy Analysis from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University. She has more than 15 years of experience in the development sector, working for the government, multilateral agencies and non-governmental organisations. In the past 10 years her research has focused on inclusive development, multidimensional poverty and M&E of development.

Areas of interest: Development Theory, Monitoring and Impact Evaluation, Research Methodology

Vagisha Gunasekera, PhD (Purdue)   

Senior Research Professional

Vagisha received her PhD in political science from Purdue University, USA.  She is interested in understanding the effects of economic development interventions on people in conflict-affected contexts. In her recent work, she has adopted a political economy approach to understand household indebtedness, precarious labour and livelihoods in post-war contexts. She has more than eight years of research experience on post war reconstruction, women and citizenship and comparative social policy. Vagisha is the thematic lead for Post war Development. 

Areas of interest: livelihoods, informal labour, tourism

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