Summary of Key Contributions 2022

National Statistics Olympiad

Department of Statistics in collaboration with the Institute of Applied Statistics Sri Lanka organized the 9th National Statistics Olympiad on the 18th of December, 2022 at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, with the aim of popularizing Statistics among schools and university students across the country. The contest revealed a ferocious battle between outstanding brains. Each participant was unique and talented. The winners were registered for the 13th Statistics Olympiad – 2023 organized by C. R. Rao Advanced Institute of Mathematics, Statistics, and Computer Science (AIMSCS) and it was held on the 29th of January, 2023. The department would like to appreciate Dr. R. M. Silva, Mr. P. Dias and Dr. N. Withanage of Department of Statistics, USJ for their active contribution towards this event.


Mr. P. Dias

  • A webinar on Business Statistics (Resource person): organized by the IASSL

Date: November 22, 2022

Target group: Advanced Level students who are studying Business Statistics.

This webinar was designed to raise awareness and provide motivation on the various degree options available to students after completing their A/L exams.

Dr. D. C. Wickramarachchi

  • Machine learning for professionals (Coordination)

Date: 3rd, 4th and 10th September 2022

This workshop was organized by Dr. Chitraka and was held at the Faculty of Applied Sciences, University of Sri Jayewardenepura.

Target group: Business leaders, mid-level to senior managers, Data specialists, Consultants and business professionals.

  • Basic Statistical Analysis using R (Resource person): organized by the Institute of Applied Statistics, Sri Lanka (IASSL)

Date: August, 2022

Target group: Medical professionals

Dr. N. Withanage

  • Modeling ordinal, nominal outcome variables (Resource person): organized by the Institute of Applied Statistics, Sri Lanka (IASSL)

Date: 13th, – 16th December, 2022 from 7 pm to 10 pm.

Target group: Researchers

Dr. N. Devpura

  • Panel data regression (Coordination)

Date: 10th March 2022

This workshop was organized by Dr. N. Devpura for the Department of Statistics staff under the AHEAD grant.

  • Writing and Paper Enhancement (Resource person):

Dates: 11th May 2022 and 14th July 2022

Target Group: Researchers, Bank Indonesia Staff.

This was organized by Bank Indonesia Institute, Indonesia and Asia-Pacific Applied Economics Association and Dr. N. Devpura served as one of the resource persons.

Dr. T. S. Talagala (Resource person)

  • Reproducible Research with R Markdown – Research Lounge Meet, University of Moratuwa (Resource person):

Date: 18 Oct 2022, Venue: University of Moratuwa

Target group: Researchers, Academics, Research students

  • Data analysis with R (Resource person): organized by the Institute of Applied Statistics, Sri Lanka (IASSL)

Date: 21st to 25th Feb 2022 from 4pm to 7 pm

Target group: Researchers, Academics, Research students

  • RMarkdown: Create insightful reports in R (Resource person)

Date: Feb 16, 2022 12:00 AM Hosted from Abuja FCT, Nigeria

Target group: Researchers, Academics, Research students

Training programmes

Dr. H. A. Pathberiya

  • Workshop on Analyzing multivariate time series and modeling volatility using R and EViews, organized by the Institute of Applied Statistics, Sri Lanka (IASSL).

Date: 19th -22nd of July 2022, 7.00 – 10.00 PM

Target Group: Postgraduates, Researchers, Academics and industry personnels

  • Workshop on Statistical Techniques.

Date: 16th of December 2022

Target Group: Students of B.Sc. (Hons.) in Applied Sciences of USJ

  • Training program on Advanced Time Series Analysis.

Date: 19th, 20th and 25th of October 2022

Target Group: Academic staff of the Department of Statistics

Guest Talks

Dr. R. M. Silva and Dr. D. C. Wickramarachchi

EDEX HYBRID EXPO 2022 was held on 26th-27th March, 2022 at Royal MAS Arena with the aim of providing Sri Lankan students with an unique opportunity to learn about local and global education for the first time though both physical and virtual platforms. As usual it brought Sri Lankan students a plethora of choices, options and opportunities to pursue their higher education aspirations. This time, attendees at the expo on the 27th got a golden opportunity to listen to Dr. Rajitha M. Silva, Dr. Chitraka Wickramarachchi and Mr. Janith Wanniarachchi of Department of Statistics, USJ on a live platform on “Data Analytics and Applications in Sports”.

Dr. H. A. Pathberiya

Guest talk on ‘Financial Analytics’ for the students of the Master of Data Analytics (MDA) programme, University of Kelaniya.

Date/Time: 10th April 2022 at 8.00 – 11.00 AM. 

Introduction of new faculty level courses

With effect from Semester 2 2022, the following courses will be offered by the Department of Statistics for all students in the faculty except for students who follow AMT/FST/STA/MAN/SSM: 

  • STA 349 2.0 Introductory Statistics: will be offered in semester 2 for the third year students.
  • STA 499 2.0 Statistical Methods: will be offered in semester 1 for the fourth year students.


Refereed indexed journal publications

Dr. D. C. Wickramarachchi

  • D. C. Wickramarachchi, H. Peiris, P. Samarasinghe, P. Vance, D. Dahanayake, V. Kulasekara and M. Nadeeshani, “Diagnosing autism in low‐income countries: Clinical record‐based analysis in Sri Lanka,” Autism Research, 2022.

Dr. N. Withanage

  • T. K. Mudiyanselage, N. weerasinghe, M. karunarathna and N. Withanage, “Highly porous double network hydrogel having fast responding time and high mechanical strength via emulsion template polymerization,” Applied polymer science, 2022.

Dr. C. L. Jayasinghe

  • Hewamana, S., Gunasena, P., Jayasinghe, C. L., Skandarajah, T., Harischandra, M., Abeyaratne, S., … & Balawardena, J. “Response and Survival Estimates of Patients With Plasma Cell Myeloma in a Resource-Constrained Setting Using Protocols From High-Income Countries: A Single-Center Experience From Sri Lanka,” JCO Global Oncology, 2022.
  • P. Perera, H. Karawita and C. L. Jayasinghe, “The applicability of camera trap data to monitor the cryptic Indian pangolin (Manus crassicaudata) populations: A survey from a tropical lowland rainforest in Southwest Sri Lanka,” Global Ecology and Conservation, 2022.
  • S. Marasinghe, P. Perera, D. Newsome, S. Kotagama and C. L. Jayasinghe, “Understanding the impact of recreational disturbance caused by motor vehicles on waterbirds: a case study from the Bundala Wetland, Sri Lanka,” Journal of Coastal Conservation, 2022.
  • D. Y.  Jayasinghe and C. L. Jayasinghe, “An investigation into adult human height distributions using kernel density estimation,” Sankhya B, 2022.
  • S. S. S. Kottearachchi, C. L. Jayasinghe and R.M. Silva, “An Investigation of Survival Abilities of Opening Batsmen in One-Day International Cricket,” Studies of Applied Economics, 2022.
  • D. De Silva, R. M. Silva and C. L. Jayasinghe, “A Study of Batting out-of-form in One-Day International Cricket,” Studies of Applied Economics, 2022.

Dr. R. M. Silva

Dr. N. Devpura

Dr. T. S. Talagala

  • Talagala, T. S., Li, F., & Kang, Y. (2022). FFORMPP: Feature-based forecast model performance prediction. International Journal of Forecasting38(3), 920-943.
  • Fotios Petropoulos et al. (2022), Forecasting: theory and practice, International Journal of Forecasting, 38(3): 705-871. Full author list available at:

Published R statistical software packages

Research collaborations

The Unit for Mathematical and Statistical Applications in Marine Biology

As a result of a great collaboration with THEME Institute, Duke University, NC, USA, and University of Sri Jayewardenepura (Department of Mathematics and Department of Statistics), the unit was established. The Centre consists of two MPhill candidates and three researchers who are working under the supervision of Prof. Nishad Jayasundara (Duke University), Dr. Pani W. Fernando (Department of Mathematics, USJ), and Dr. Niroshan Withanage (Department of Statistics, USJ). The aim of the unit is to share knowledge and expertise with the mathematical and statistical approaches in marine biology and to enhance research opportunities.

The USJ Statistics in Sports Research Group

The USJ Statistics in Sports Research Group is a hub dedicated for data analytics projects in sports and it is the first ever research group in Sri Lanka formed to conduct research, dedicated to sports analytics. It was originally launched with the aim of supporting university students who are interested in engaging in research that Applies Statistics to solve various research problems related to sports. Another goal of the group is to popularize and promote sports analytics research in Sri Lanka. Our research group harnesses a wealth of expertise in statistics, data science, and sports science through the Department of Statistics itself and its collaborators. Further details can be found at


The initial discussion was held on 24/11/2022 at the FAS Board Room with a team led by Mr. Supun Sharada and Ms. Udeesha Kumarathunga from MAS Linea Aqua. Founding steps were laid to initiate a collaboration between MAS Linea Aqua and the department to develop solutions and models for a few key Data Science projects which are in their project pipeline. The department intends to open up more internship opportunities for students and recent graduates through this partnership. Currently, the department has initiated the collaboration through the department Statistical Consulting Service with active participation of BSc (honors) in Statistics and MSc in Applied Statistics students.


  • At the AGM 2022 of Institute of Applied Statistics Sri Lanka (Incorporated by Parliament Act No. 38 of 2011) the following staff members of the department were elected to the council:
  • Dr. D.C. Wickramarachchi: President of IASSL
  • Dr. W.N.N.K. Perera: Chairperson, Academic and Training Committee
  • Dr. R.M. Silva: Chairperson, Statistics Popularization Committee
  • Dr. C.L. Jayasinghe: Associate Editor of IASSL, committee member of Academic and Training Committee
  • Dr. N. Devpura was elected as the Secretary of Asia-Pacific Applied Economics Association (APAEA) with effect from 26th November 2022.
  • Dr. D.C. Wickramarachchi was elected as the UGC Nominee for the Member of the Board of Management of the National Institute of Library and Information Sciences (NILIS), University of Colombo.


  • Upon invitation by the Ministry of Health, Dr. C.L. Jayasinghe, Dr. W.N.N.K. Perera, Dr. R.M. Silva and Dr. N. Devpura contributed to the review of the National Health Policy (2016 – 2025).
  • Dr. N. Withanage served as a resource person for developing VET plan – electrical and electronic sector from 2021 to 2026.
  • Dr. D.C. Wickramarachchi served as a resource person for VET plan – Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Sector from 2021 to 2026.


A seminar on Actuarial and Risk Management was organized for undergraduates who follow statistics as a subject by the “Statistics Society” in affiliation with the Department of Statistics on the 15th December, 2022 at NFC4 from 3 to 5 pm. This seminar was organized to enlighten our students on careers in the field of Actuarial Science.

Resource person: Ms. Saroja Gunathilleke (FIA, M.Sc., G.DIP, B.Sc.), Managing Director at S G Actuarial Consultancy (PVT) LTD.


A financial aid program organized by the “Statistics Society” in affiliation with the Department of Statistics for first and second-year undergraduates who study statistics as a subject with financial difficulties.

Objective: To help undergraduates financially to reduce the number of university dropouts due to financial related problems.

Shortlisted applicants were interviewed by a panel of lecturers: Mr. P. Dias, Dr. Chathuri Jayasinghe, Dr. Manjula Perera and Dr. Rajitha M. Silva. The degree of the financial burden was considered mainly in the selection. The current run of the program aimed to provide financial relief for the selected students in the Semester 2 of the current academic year.  The current run of the program was able to financially aid 22 first and second year students with the generous support of the sponsors (which includes department staff). Continuous (discipline/attendance/academic performance) monitoring of the 22 selected scholarship holders is being carried out.


Establishment of Stat Lab 2 (computer laboratory) by the Department of Statistics through funding from the Faculty AHEAD Project and M.Sc. in Data Science and AI Programme.