February 13, 1966 |
Colombo, Sri Lanka
|Occupation||Journalist, Science Writer|
||This article has an unclear citation style. (June 2011)|
He initially worked as a science journalist in Sri Lanka's English language newspapers, and also freelanced for radio and television. After winning three national awards for outstanding science journalism, he moved on to the development sector, where he worked as an editorial consultant, journalist trainer and communication advisor.
In 1996, he co-founded TVE Asia Pacific, a Colombo-based regional not-for-profit media foundation communicating sustainable development issues through TV, video and the web. As its Director since 2002, he has scripted, directed, produced or executive produced several dozen Asian and global documentaries, including Children_of_Tsunami:_No_More_Tears (2005). In 2006, he called for media content on poverty and development to be recognised as a 'copyright free zone' to enhance their secondary use for public education purposes.
He is the author/editor of several technical books related to science, technology and development, most recently Communicating Disasters: An Asia Pacific Resource Book (TVEAP/UNDP, 2007). He was part of the British and South Asian team of researchers associated with the Media South Asia Project that studied the nature of the satellite television revolution which began in the early 1990s and transformed South Asian societies and cultures.
He is especially known for his analytical writing on the impact of Information and communication technologies for development (ICTs) on developing Asian societies. From 2003 to 2008, he was Contributing Editor (Sri Lanka) of the bi-annual regional survey Digital Review of Asia Pacific, and co-authored National Human Development Report – Promoting ICT for Human Development in Sri Lanka Report (UNDP, 2004).
He is a regular speaker or panelist at international conferences on public communication of science and technology, development journalism, public interest broadcasting and ICT for development. He has been on juries at leading international documentary film festivals. Most recently, he was a juror for the International Digital Emmy Awards 2011, presented in Cannes, France on 4 April 2011.
Nalaka Gunawardene started writing a SInhala language column (සිවුමංසල කොලූගැටයා) for the alternative newspaper Ravaya, a Sinhala language Sunday newspaper from February, 2011. Some selected stories were published as a book in August, 2012. A second book with 54 columns written in 2012-13 is being prepared for printing. The second book will be released in September, 2013.
- The Green Pen: Environmental Journalism in India and South Asia (Sage Books, 2010) 
Communicating Disasters book, co-edited in 2007 
Sinhala Columns at http://nalakagunawardene.com/ravaya-column/