Message from the Co-ordinator, University of Ruhuna

The agricultural sector in Sri Lanka is dominated within the sphere of her economy as it brings export revenues. It is also the most important source of employment for majority of the Sri Lankan workforce for the time being. However, challenges for the agricultural systems within the country are continuously escalating due to the effect of disasters, the impact of climate change, increase in the country’s population and their dynamic consumption patterns, and other forceful economic and social factors, proving the need for necessary actions to be carried out to tackle these challenges. The country’s ambition is to develop knowledge-based strategies to build resilience in tropical agroecosystems, in which higher education institutes (HEIs) would have to bear much responsibility through profound research and development programmes. Within this purview, BRITAE plans to build the capacities of all targeted HEIs in order to strengthen their research and innovative capacities to tackle the challenges associated with building resilience in tropical agroecosystems. BRITAE is co-funded by the EU Erasmus+ programme, which will run for a period of three years, and is led by the University of Ruhuna, based in Sri Lanka with the collaboration of 8 other local (partner country) and European (programme country) universities including University of Colombo, University of Moratuwa, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, University of Huddersfield, UK, University of Central Lancashire, UK,  Vilnius Gediminas Technical University, Lithuania, and Tallinn University of Technology, Estonia. The proposed BRITAE program provides a vibrant platform to share high-impact research experiences from EU countries and their applicable merits to be embedded in developing countries of the Asian region jointly by academic institutions.

In this endeavor, the experience gathered by University of Ruhuna during the last 14 years after the Tsunami (working with a number of national and international universities and agencies in Asia such as Asian Disaster Preparedness Center) will be shared with partner Institutions to formulate a field and practical based international Master’s program for students of both developed and developing countries.

BRITAE will focus on understanding the knowledge gap on agroecosystem-based resilience through a comprehensive survey framework by assessing the knowledge gap, available resources, and capacities for joint curriculum development. Based on the comprehensive need and gap assessment, an innovative and adaptive MSc curricular in agroecosystem-based resilience aiming at food security and climate change impacts will be developed. After developing the innovative BRITAE curricular, it will be certified and integrated into the university postgraduate degree programmes, thus enabling postgraduate students to reap the benefits of the programme. The proposed curriculum offers knowledge on agroecosystem-based resilience to identify capacity-building strategies, research and innovations to reduce and deescalate disaster risks. This project will nourish modern multi-disciplinary courses linked to resilience and climate change adaptation related to agroecosystems. Moreover, this curricular will help to share resources of the partner/programme universities for educational and research purposes in a customized way. It is also expected that the activities of the project will increase and strengthen the collaboration of international partners while opening avenues for current and future professors in BRITAE as well as related areas by using innovative teaching methods and related disciplines.

Besides, one of the main objectives of the project is to develop a Smart Agroecosystem-based Resilience Center (SARC) to facilitate teaching and learning along with research, and development. The SARC will be a coordinating/resource sharing center in ensuring the food and ecosystem security both in programme/partner countries and elsewhere and it will strengthen the relationship between HEI activity in the region, and the wider social and economic environment at large. Further, an online student service platform will be developed and implemented by blending European practices in education to enhance the virtues of the proposed degree program.

Finally, I strongly believe that BRITAE is the need of the hour to achieve sustainability of agricultural systems and I immensely appreciate the Erasmus+ programme for thoughtfully giving Sri Lanka this opportunity. Conclusively, I extend my sincere wishes to the BRITAE team and good luck for great success in every aspect of the project.


Champa Navaratne,

Senior Professor in Agricultural Engineering,

University of Ruhuna

Privacy Settings
We use cookies to enhance your experience while using our website. If you are using our Services via a browser you can restrict, block or remove cookies through your web browser settings. We also use content and scripts from third parties that may use tracking technologies. You can selectively provide your consent below to allow such third party embeds. For complete information about the cookies we use, data we collect and how we process them, please check our Privacy Policy
Consent to display content from Youtube
Consent to display content from Vimeo
Google Maps
Consent to display content from Google
Consent to display content from Spotify
Sound Cloud
Consent to display content from Sound