Fostering Innovation to Fast-forward Growth in Sri Lanka

Research team

Anushka Wijesinha
Nethmini Perera


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Published Year

December 2012


US$ 15 (for hardcopy)

With technological transformations continuing at a rapid pace, and the emergence of a globalised market-place, all countries are under pressure to become more innovative. Sri Lanka too needs to focus heavily on innovation in this new post-war era and in that context, this publication looks at the imperative of innovation for Sri Lanka’s growth and competitiveness. It explores the status of R&D investment, availability of a skilled talent pool, need for industry-research collaboration, importance of commercialization and innovative financing, attracting diaspora scientists, among other issues. The paper calls for innovation policy to be considered in a holistic manner, and calls for a powerful National Innovation Council to be set up to drive the agenda at a national, strategic level.


Table of Contents:
2.What is Innovation and Why is it Important
3.Innovation Policy and Key Elements in Promoting Innovation
4.Government Policy Support for Innovation
5.Status of Policy Relating to Innovation in Sri Lanka6. Concept of the ‘National Innovation System’
6.Concept of the ‘National Innovation System’
7.National Innovation System’ – Reviewing Sri Lanka’s Performance
7.1 Research and Development
7.1.1 Performance on Innovation Inputs
7.1.2 Performance on Innovation Outputs
7.2 Moving from Research to Innovation – Industry Linkages, Financing, and Commercialization
7.2.1 Industry-Research Linkages
7.2.3 Financing
7.3 Talent Pool for Innovation – Investing in S&T Education
7.3.1 Supplying the Relevant Talent Pool
Human Resources in Science and Technology
7.3.3 Simultaneously Addressing Demand Issues
7.4 Incentives for Innovation
8.Importance of International Openness and International Cooperation for Innovation
9.Reversing ‘Brain Drain’ and Leveraging the Diaspora to Strengthen Innovative Capacity
10.Way Forward for Sri Lanka