Samaratunga, a grant agreement under the Japanese Grant Aid for Human Resource Development Scholarship (JDS) was signed on June 26 at the Finance and Mass Media Ministry, to the tune of 265 million Japanese Yen (Rs. 374 million) between Dr. Samaratunga and JICA Sri Lanka Office Chief Representative Fusato Tanaka.
Concluding the signing, Dr. Samaratunga said, I see this as a good opportunity for our young officers to learn from Japan's vast experiences. This will help them build their individual capacities on strategic planning and implementation-related topics, which they are now dealing in their day-to-day work. Research findings and best practices they observed during their stay in Japan, will be quite useful to each organisation and individual.
The JDS scheme was introduced to the Sri Lankan Government in the year 2010, with the purpose of developing capacities of young government officials who are actively involved in the planning and execution of development policies.
Since its initiation, 122 government officials had been accepted for Master's and Doctoral Degree courses at Japanese universities, while another batch of 15 officials would depart to Japan later this year.
By applying to the JDS programme, participants under its study would have access to components such as public policy and public finance, economics, business-management, environmental studies, disaster-management and climate change.
Participants would also receive an opportunity to acquire knowledge on the latest financial theories and growth models besides social aspects such as labour and employment, child health, health equity, education, micro-finance, investments and even spreading to other new areas such as disaster risk-management on landslide and irrigation.
Other than its academic diversity and attractiveness, the JDS scheme is also renowned for its special characteristics in terms of preparations and amenities provided to its fellows.
By the end of the programme, it is expected that the total number of Sri Lankan Government officials who would receive fellowships from JICA would reach 188.