Conference Programme


The Keynote speakers will give an overview of the international trends with regard to participatory processes in post-disaster housing rebuilding. The session will draw on examples from across the globe and stimulate a discussion about the home owner driven process, post-climate and post-conflict disasters, donors views on post-emergency reconstruction in Sri Lanka, and generally set the tone for the two day conference.

DAY 1: 24th March 2014

9.00 a.m. – 9.30 a.m.


9.30 a.m. – 10.30 a.m.

Ceremonial opening

Welcome : Yoshinobu Fukasawa, Director, UN-Habitat Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, Fukuoka

Address by

  • His Excellency, David Daly, the Ambassador of the European Union to Sri Lanka and the Maldives (or Chargé d’Affaires a.i.)
  • Her Excellency, Robyn Mudie,  the Australian High Commissioner
  • His Excellency, Thomas Litscher, the Swiss Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the Maldives
  • S B Divaratne,  Secretary, Presidential Task Force on Resettlement, Development and Security of the Northern  Province


10.30 a.m. -10.45 a.m. Tea

10.45 a.m. – 1.00 p.m.
Plenary session
1. Housing reconstruction as ‘people’s process’ in practiceChair – Lalith Lankatilleke, Senior Human Settlements Officer, UN-Habitat, Fukuoka
Introductory Remarks

  • “Voices from the Field”  – Video Documentary
  • Jaime Royo-Olid,  Programme Manager – Infrastructure and Reconstruction, European Union Delegation to Sri Lanka and the Maldives:
    Programming for developmental ‘Homeowner Driven’ Housing Reconstruction
  • Somsook Boonyabancha, Secretary-General of Asian Coalition for Housing Rights, Thailand:
    Participatory Approaches Advocated over the years  in South East Asia.
  • David Evans, Settlements Recovery Unit Leader, UN-Habitat, Nairobi:
    Interaction between the Stakeholders immediately following a disaster, and the role for UN-Habitat.
  • H M Dayananda, General Manager, Real Estate Exchange Pvt Ltd:
    Enabling Environment for Shelter Rebuilding in Sri Lanka
  • Anurag Srivasta, Director (Finance), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India:
    Indian Government Approach to Post Conflict Reconstruction and Development in Sri Lanka, Lessons Learned
  • Q&A


1.00 p.m. – 2.00 p.m. Lunch
2.00 p.m. – 4.15 p.m. Parallel session 2. a) Ensuring enabling environmentsChair – Jan Meeuwissen, Senior Manager, UN-Habitat, Nairobi

  • Opening comments
  • Susil Sirivardana, Former Chairperson of the Housing Authority and Writer:
    Contextual Challenges are Fundamental
  • Vagisha Gunasekera, Centre for Poverty Analysis (CEPA):
    “Life and Debt”: an Assessment of Indebtedness and Socio-economic Conditions of Housing Beneficiaries in Jaffna, Kilinochchi and Mullaitivu. 
    Rupa Manel Silva, President and Anoma Lalani Jayasinghe, Sri Lanka
  • Women’s Development Services Cooperative Society Ltd (WOMEN’S COOP):
    The Successes of the Women’s Bank in Financing
  • Shailaja Fennell, Lecturer, Centre of Development Studies, University of Cambridge:
    Reconstruction as a form of Intervention: examining the role of Local Institutional Mechanisms in building Social Cohesion
  • Rasika Mendis – Senior Research Specialist, World Vision:
    Housing Policy and Restitution in the Post Conflict Rehabilitation and Development


2.00 p.m. – 4.15 p.m. Parallel session 2. b) Participation and processesChair – Somsook Boonyabancha, Secretary-General of Asian Coalition for Housing Rights, Thailand

  • Opening comments
  • P S M Charles, District Secretary, Batticaloa:
    Working with Stakeholders with different Interests
  • Mona Chhabra, basin-South Asia:
    Owner based processes for generating development policies that are responsive to housing vulnerabilities of the rural poor – efforts of civil society collectives in India
  • Mohammad Rahman, National Project Manager, UN-Habitat, Afghanistan:
    Rebuilding Human Capital in Post Conflict Reconstruction
  • Sandra D’Urzo, Architect and Senior Officer of the Shelter Department,  IFRC, Geneva:
    Making owner-driven housing work after disasters and crisis: an IFRC perspective
  • Dinesh Kangaratnam, National Director, Habitat for Humanity Sri Lanka:
    Enterprise Project Management System for Housing Projects


4.15 p.m. – 5.15 p.m. 3.  Marketplace  (Poster presentations and tea)

DAY 2: 25th March 2014

9.00 a.m. – 10.15 a.m.
4.  Housing reconstruction in a post-emergency setting: perspectives from the fieldIntroduction to session / Moderator – Laxman Perera, Deputy Country Programme Manager /Human Settlement Officer, UN-Habitat, Myanmar

  • N Vedanayahan, District Secretary, Mullativu
  • Sinnavan Susi,  Home owner from the ‘Support to Conflict Affected People through Housing’ project, Mulliwaikal East, Mullativu
  • Sinnarasa Sivakunalan and Sivakunalan Thevajeni, Home owners from Akkaraayankulam Centre, Kilinochchi
  • A H M Jezeer, Deputy Project Manager, UN-Habitat, Sri Lanka


10.15 a.m. – 10.45 a.m. Tea
10.45 a.m. – 1.00 p.m. Parallel session 5. a) Beyond Reconstruction – sustainable communitiesChair –  Disa Weerapana, former Asia Regional Office Director, UN-Habitat
Opening comments

  • Matthew Barac, Architecture Programme Research Leader, London South Bank University and Chair – Board of Architecture Sans Frontières – UK:
    “Technologies of Belonging: Object Relations in the Architecture of Reconstruction”
  • Guido de Vries, Country Director,  ZOA:
    Advocating for a core, incremental building housing approach
  • Eleanor J Parker, Building and Social Housing Foundation (BSHF) and Department of Geography, Environment and Disaster Management, Coventry University:
    Achieving Sustainable Post Disaster Reconstruction in the long term: Lessons learned  from Latin America and South East Asia over 3 decades
  • Vasant Pulleyanayagam, Housing Consultant, Integrated Housing Services, Practical Action:  
    Participatory Quality Assurance Mechanisms in Construction
  • Khyati Halani, All India Disaster Management Institute, Ahmedabad:
    Owner Driven Reconstruction: Where Women are Leaders
  • Q&A


10.45 a.m. – 1.00 p.m. Parallel session 5. b) Safer and Sustainable HousingChair – Kirtee Shah, Architect
Opening comments

  • Satprem Maïni  and Lara Davis, Auroville Earth Institute, India (UNESCO Chair):
    Using CSEB for Owner-Driven Reconstruction based on  experiences in Kutch, Gujarat – India, post  2001 Earthquake, and east coast of Sri Lanka post 2004 tsunami
    Building with Earth: Sustainable Resource Management with CSEB
  • Hina Zaidi, Senior Architect, Heritage Foundation, Pakistan:
    Local Technologies and improved Vernacular methods in building community capacity
  • Vijayaraghavan M Chariar  and Mona Chabra,  Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi:
    “Where are all the Masons trained in Disaster Resilient Technologies?” – Reflections from Indian experiences of Capacity Building of Masons as primary messengers of safety in the built environment
  • Piyal Ganepola, Deputy Project Manager, Programmes and Indu Weerasoori, Project Manager / DRR, UN-Habitat, Sri Lanka:
    Challenges in introducing alternative technologies in Homeowner Driven housing
  •  Dhammika Gunawardene, Director/Industrial Training, and Anura Dassanayake, Chairman, Institute of Construction Training and Development (ICTAD)
  • Q&A


1.00 a.m. – 2.00 p.m. Lunch
2.00 p.m. – 4.00 p.m.

6. Building on learning to meet the challenges ahead

  • Panel discussion – Chairs/Facilitators of each session will discuss key points from their respective sessions
  • Lalith Lankatilleke, Jan Meeuwissen, Somsook Boonyabancha, Laxman Perera, Disa Weerapana, Kirtee Shah
  • Q&A
  • Closing Remarks – Jaime Royo-Olid
  • Vote of thanks – Saman Ekanayake, UN-Habitat Programme Manager for Sri Lanka a.i.


4.00 p.m. – 5.00 p.m. Tea


Conference partners