Dr. Ashani S Ranathunga

Dr. Ashani S Ranathunga


I joined University of Leeds as a Lecturer in School of Civil Engineering in March 2022 and was a Lecturer at the Department of Civil Engineering, University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka for four years prior to my appointment at University of Leeds. 

I graduated summa cum laude in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka in 2013. I received my PhD from Monash University, Australia, in 2017 for the thesis titled “Investigation of long-term safe storage of Carbon Dioxide in Deep Coal Seams with Enhanced Methane Recovery”. I won the Best PhD Thesis Award by the Department of Civil Engineering at Monash University together with the Postgraduate Publication Award for the candidate with an excellent publication record for the year 2017. 

As an early carrier researcher and academic, I received several awards and grants. Some of them are the OWSD (Organisation for the Women in Science for the Developing Countries) - Elsevier Foundation Award for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World in 2022 for Asia-Pacific region and the Bright Spark Lecturer Award in 2020 awarded for the promising young geotechnical engineer/academic by the International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE). There, I got the opportunity to present the Bright Spark Lecturer award – keynote in the 20th International Conference on Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering in Sydney, Australia held in May 2022. 

I currently work as a transformative lecturer in teaching and scholarship for the “10-year Curriculum Redefined Programme” of the university to transform the educational experience of its students, ensuring that regardless of their background, all develop the knowledge and skills needed to succeed and make a positive impact in the world.  


  • School Academic Lead for Inclusive Practice (SALIP)
  • Curriculum Redefined Lecturer

Research interests

My research interests are mainly aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). 

SDG 4: Quality Education 

Education for sustainable development; Transformative learning for Civil Engineering, Inquiry-based teaching & learning; Inclusive teaching & learning 

SDG 7: Affordable and clean energy 

Enhanced Coal bed methane recovery 

SDG 12: Responsible consumption and production 

Waste Valorisation for geotechnical engineering applications 

SDG 13: Climate Action 

Geo-sequestration of Carbon Dioxide; Waste Valorisation 

<h4>Research projects</h4> <p>Any research projects I'm currently working on will be listed below. Our list of all <a href="https://eps.leeds.ac.uk/dir/research-projects">research projects</a> allows you to view and search the full list of projects in the faculty.</p>


  • PhD in Geotechnical Engineering, Monash University, Australia
  • BSc (Hons) in Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Ruhuna, Sri Lanka (MEng equivalent)
  • AFHEA, Associate Fellow - AdvanceHE

Professional memberships

  • Member, International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering

Student education

I presently teach following modules:

CIVE3860 – Integrated Design Project 3

CIVE5331M – Construction Technology (Module leader)

CIVE5161M – Energy Geotechnics

Research groups and institutes

  • Materials and Structures