Rosh Ranasinghe

Head of the CURR Department
Professor of Climate Change Impacts & Coastal Risk


Prof. dr. Roshanka (Rosh) Ranasinghe holds the AXA Chair in Climate Change Impacts and Coastal Risk at the Department of Coastal & Urban Risk & Resilience, IHE Delft and at the Department of Water Engineering and Management, University of Twente. He also holds Visiting Professor appointments at the Australian National University and the University of Queensland, Australia.

Rosh obtained his Bachelor of Science Engineering (1st Class Honours) from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka in 1993 and his PhD in Coastal Engineering and Oceanography from the Centre for Water Research, University of Western Australia in 1998. Since then he has worked in the Academic and government sectors in Australia, USA and The Netherlands.

To date, Rosh has published over 200 peer reviewed articles and delivered over 25 invited presentations around the world. He is regularly invited to provide expert advice on adaptation to climate change and coastal zone management by national and local governments and international agencies. Rosh is a corresponding member of the National Committee on Coastal and Ocean Engineering (Australia) and a Director of The National Think Tank on Blue Economy (Sri Lanka).

Rosh has supervised/co-supervised 10 Post-doctoral fellows, 20+ PhD candidates and numerous MSc students to date and has lead several capacity development projects in Sri Lanka, India, VietNam, Thailand, Sao Tome and Principe.

He actively contributes to the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) process. Currently Rosh is Coordinating Lead Author in Working Group I contribution to the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), which is due to be released in 2021. He is also a Contributing Author in the IPCC Special report on Oceans and Cryosphere in a Changing Climate (SROCC), which will be released in 2019.



A. Luijendijk, G. Hagenaars, R. Ranasinghe, F. Baart, G. Donchyts and S. Aarninkhof, S., The State of the World’s Beaches. Scientific reports, Vol 8, 6641

T. Duong, R. Ranasinghe, M. Thatcher, S. Mahanama, Z. Wang, P. Dissanayake, M. Hemer, A. Luijendijk, J. Bamunawala, D. Roelvink and D. Walstra. 2017. Assessing climate change impacts on the stability of small tidal inlets: Part 2 – data rich environments. Marine Geology, Vol 395, 65-81.

A. P. Luijendijk, R. Ranasinghe, B. Huisman, M. A. De Schipper, C. Swinkels, D. J. R. Walstra and M. Stive. 2017. The initial morphological response of the Sand Engine: A process based modelling study. Coastal Engineering, Vol. 119, 1-14.

R. Ranasinghe. 2016. Assessing Climate change impacts on Coasts: A Review. Earth Science Reviews, Vol. 160, 320-332.

K. L. McInnes, C. J. White, I. D. Haigh, M. A. Hemer, R. A, Hoeke, N. J. Holbrook, A. S. Kiem, E. Oliver, K. Walsh, S. Westra, R. Cox and R. Ranasinghe. 2016. Natural Hazards in Australia: Sea level and coastal extremes. Climatic Change, DOI: 10.1007/s10584-016-1647-8

T. Duong, R. Ranasinghe, D. J. R. Walstra and D. Roelvink. 2016. Assessing Climate change impacts on the stability of Small Tidal Inlet systems: Why and How? Earth Science Reviews,

R. Jongejan, R. Ranasinghe, D. Wainwright, D. Callaghan and J. Reyns. 2016. Drawing the line on coastline recession risk. Ocean and Coastal Management, Vol. 122, 87-94,

D. J. Wainwright, R. Ranasinghe, D. P. Callaghan, C. D. Woodroffe, R. Jongejan, A. J. Dougherty, K. Rogers and P. J. Cowell. 2015. Moving from Deterministic towards Probabilistic Coastal Hazard and Risk Assessment: Development of a Modelling Framework and Application to Narrabeen Beach, New South Wales, Australia. Coastal Engineering, Vol. 96, 92-99,

R. Ranasinghe, T. Duong, S. Uhlenbrook, D. Roelvink and M. Stive. 2013. Climate Change impact assessment for inlet-interrupted coastlines. Nature Climate Change, Vol. 3, 83-87.

R. Ranasinghe,  D. Callaghan and M. J. F. Stive. 2012. Estimating coastal recession due to sea level rise: Beyond the Bruun Rule. Climatic Change, Vol. 110, 561-574.

R. Ranasinghe and M. J. F. Stive. 2009. Rising Seas and Retreating Coastlines. Climatic Change (Editorial Commentary), Vol 97, 465-468.

D. Callaghan, P. Nielsen, A. Short and R. Ranasinghe. 2008. Statistical simulation of wave climate and extreme beach erosion. Coastal Engineering, Vol 55(5), 375-390.

R. Holman, G. Symonds, E. Thornton and R. Ranasinghe. 2006. Rip Spacing and Persistence on an Embayed Beach. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 111, C01006, DOI: 10.1029/2005JC002965.

R. Ranasinghe, G. Symonds, K. Black and R. Holman. 2004. Morphodynamics of Intermediate Beaches: A Video Imaging and Numerical Modelling Study. Coastal Engineering, Vol. 51, 629-655.

R. Ranasinghe, R. McLoughlin, A. Short and G. Symonds. 2004. The Southern Oscillation Index, Wave Climate, and Beach Rotation. Marine Geology, Vol. 204, 273-287.

R. Ranasinghe, C. Pattiaratchi, and G.  Masselink, 1999. A Morphodynamic Model to Simulate the Seasonal Closure of Tidal Inlets. Coastal Engineering, Vol. 37(1), 1 - 36.


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Research Interests

  • Quantification of climate change impacts on coasts
  • Development of quantitative coastal risk assessment techniques
  • Development of reduced complexity and probabilistic models to simulate long term ( ~ 100 years) coastal change
  • Strategic application of process based models to assess climate change impacts on coasts
  • Understanding medium term coastal morphodynamic phenomena such as tidal inlet closure/migration, rip-bar morphodynamics, sand bar dynamics via numerical modelling, field data and video imaging
  • Development of rapid assessment techniques to predict medium-long term coastline response to engineering interventions

Awards, Fellowships & Scholarships

  • Best country coordinator award IHE Delft 2017
  • Australan Research Council Future Fellow award 2012
  • Delft University of Technology (Civil Engineering) award for outstanding research output 2011
  • IHE Delft Rector's award for outstanding research output 2009
  • NSW Premier’s Senior Research Scientist Award 2006
  • STINT Fellowship (Govt. of Sweden) for innovative collaborative research 2004
  • NSW Premier’s Research Scientist Award 2003
  • Overseas Post-graduate Research Scholarship, University of Western Australia 1994
  • University Research Scholarship, University of Western Australia 1994
  • Award best performance in Geotechnics, University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka 1993
  • Award most outstanding Civil Engineering student, University of Peradeniya 1992

Rosh Ranasinghe in the media



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