Ranil Sugathadasa Offers a Model for Supply Chain Risk Management in the Construction Industry

Dr. Ranil Sugathadasa
History has shown that not responding to risks and their triggers come with a cost. Many projects have ended in disaster, sometimes even with the loss of lives and property. The space shuttle Challenger that disintegrated shortly after takeoff is a grave reminder. The lesson learnt is that risk management should never be compromised.
Prof. Amal Kumarage

On research more earth bound, the research undertaken by Ranil Sugathadasa for his PhD is a timely topic considering the large number of construction projects that are currently underway in Sri Lanka. He specifically focused on risk triggers in the supply chain of the local construction industry. His PhD program was architected on an international collaboration between his two supervisors, Prof. Amal Kumarage from the University of Moratuwa, and Dr. Lee Styger from the University of Wollongong, Australia.

Dr. Lee Styger

"Due to its vulnerabilities, the construction industry's supply chain is an Achilles heel that could weaken the progress of construction projects", says Ranil, introducing his research. He categorizes the risks involved into three main areas, i.e. stakeholder risks, material risks and risks specific to the construction industry.  

One outcome of his research is a model to calculate the impact of risks triggered and eventuating in these categories. For example, the risks triggered by the stakeholders, such as the contractors, suppliers and consultants are identified. This model can further predict probabilities of risks eventuating based on the risk triggers. Hence the impact of each separate risk on the project and the total accumulated impact from all risks identified on the project can be estimated in terms of time and cost. Another outcome is the Risk Relationship Diagram(RRD), which has the capability to predict the integral impact of various risks that could eventuate in a project. The model employs a fine-grained approach where it can predict how a risk in one category would affect risks in the same category, as well as those in other categories.

Upon completing his schooling at Eheliyagoda Central College, Ranil obtained his first degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Moratuwa, later an MBA from the University of Colombo and an MSc from the University of Moratuwa were also obtained. He is a Chartered Engineer, and also a Project Management Professional(PMP). He is an energetic and charismatic corporate trainer, who enjoys motivating professionals and students alike. Ranil currently serves as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Moratuwa.

Dr. Sugathadasa is very happy that he pursued a PhD program at the University of Moratuwa, through which he developed skills such as persistence, critical thinking, reflective practices, time management, prioritizing and research skills. He is appreciative of both his mentors, who, through the diversity in their outlook, drove him to excel in all aspects of life.

Prof. Kumarage has a B.Sc (Eng.) degree from the University of Moratuwa, and a PhD from the University of Calgary, Canada. He  is a Senior Professor and the Head of the Department of Transport and Logistics Management, at the University of Moratuwa and is a well known consultant to the Government in the area of Transport Management. Dr. Lee Styger is a senior academic in the Faculty of Business at the University of Wollongong. He has managed many new product development and supply chain projects from a number of sectors including aerospace, medical devices, automotive and environmental.


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