Our History

A Higher Educational Project of Sri Dalada Maligawa.

Sri Lanka International Buddhist Academy (SIBA) was established in February 2009 as a higher educational project of the Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic in Kandy, Sri Lanka. The Temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic, better known as Sri Dalada Maligawa, is the most venerated Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka. It is here that the Sacred Tooth Relic of Lord Buddha is enshrined. The new Academy acquires its singular significance and uniqueness particularly among Sri Lankans and Buddhists in general due to its association with the Sri Dalada Maligawa. The initiative for setting up the Academy was taken, with the advice and blessings of the most Venerable Prelates (Mahanayake Theras) of the two chapters, Malwa- tta and Asgiriya, of the Buddhist Sangha of the Syamopali Mahanikaya, by Hon. Pradeep Nilanga Dela, the Chief Lay Custodian (Diyawadana Nilame) of Sri Dalada Maligawa. The concept paper for the establishment of the academy was written by Dr. G.A. Somaratne, Professor in Pali and Buddhist Studies, University of Peradeniya. The Academy was located at the Buddhist Research Centre at Pallekele, Kundasale, and on 1 June 2009, academic work began with the appointment of Prof. J.M. Gunadasa, former Vice-Chancellor of University of Peradeniya, as SIBA's founding Rector. With the invitation of Hon. Pradeep Nilanga Dela, the Chairman of SIBA, the first batch of Buddhist Leadership students for the BA degree program- me in was ceremonially admitted by His Excellency Mahinda Rajapakse, President of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, on Thursday 23 July 2009. His Excellency the President together with the Ambassador of the Royal Norwegian Government and the Chairman SIBA laid the foundation stone for the new SIBA building complex and also launched the SIBA website on the same day. The new building complex was opened by the Most Venerable Prof. Dr. Dharmakosajarn, Rector of Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University on August 10, 2010, and the classes for the new academic year began on 11 August 2010.

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Making History

  • 4 October 2007 - Hon. Dr. Pradeep Nilanga Dela, Diyawadena Nilame sends a letter to the Royal Norwegian Embassy
  • 4 January 2008 - Diyawadena Nilame meets His Exellency Tore Hattrem at the Royal Norwegian Embassy
  • 10 May 2008 - Diyawadena Nilame presents the Draft Proposal for Bhikkhu Training Institute to Norwegian Embassy at Sri Dalada Maligawa and makes a site visit to Pallekele
  • 06 June 2008 - Mr. Gamini Bandara meets Prof. G.A. Somaratne at his residence
  • 20 June 2008 - Prof. G.A. Somaratne presents the Draft Proposal of SIBA to Diyawadena Nilame
  • 25 June 2008 - Discussion takes place on the Draft Proposal at Sri Dalada Maligawa
  • 23 August 2008 - At Sri Dalada Maligawa, Diyawadena Nilame presents the Proposal to the Royal Norwegian Ambassador who promises the funding for the project
  • 11 September 2008 -The Most Venerable Mahanayake Theros send a letter to the Royal Norwegian Embassy extending their cooperation to establish SIBA
  • 30 October 2008 - At Sri Dalada Maligawa, the Royal Norwegian Ambassador presents a letter pledging US$ 1 million
  • 12 November 2008 - Diyawadena Nilame visits Durakij Pundit University Thailand
  • 14 November 2008 - Diyawadena Nilame meets the Most Venerable Rector of Mahachulalongkornrajavidyalaya University
  • 6 December 2008 - A workshop takes place at Pallekele on the preparation of the Strategic Plan
  • 17 December 2008 - Prof. G.A. Somaratne sends the curriculum of the BA Degree in Buddhist Leadership to MCU for approval
  • 17 February 2009 - Academy receives official registration (GA 2232) under the Company Act 7 of 2007
  • 6 March 2009 -Prof. Gunadasa and Prof. Somaratne distribute the first copies of the Handbook at Sri Dalada Maligawa
  • 29 March 2009 - The first Newspaper advertisement appears calling for enrollment in the study programmes
  • 26 April 2009 - SIBA holds the first meeting of the Board of Directors at Pallekele
  • 1 June 2009 - Prof. J.M. Gunadasa, Prof. P.D. Premasiri, Prof. G.A. Somaratne, and Mr. Lalith Weeraddana assume duties as the founding Rector, Director-Academic, Director-Research, and Registrar respectively
  • 23 July 2009 - His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka admits the first batch of students to SIBA and lays the foundation stone for the new building complex
  • 16 September 2009 - SIBA holds the first meeting of the Board of Study
  • 17 July 2010 - Prof. G.A. Somaratne assumes duties as Rector - SIBA
  • 6 August 2010 - SIBA admits the second batch of students for the degree programme
  • 10 August 2010 - Diyawadena Nilame and the Most Venerable Rector of MCU open the new building complex
  • 24 August 2010 -DCI and SIBA sign a MOU to establish the SIBA-DCI Research Centre
  • 4 December 2010 - SIBA holds the first OPEN DAY
  • 10-12 December 2010 - SIBA hosts the 4th International Conference of Sri Lanka Association of Buddhist Studies
  • 15 December 2010 - Prof. Thula G. Wijewardana assumes duties as Deputy-Rector - SIBA
  • 20 March 2011 - SIBA launches Sri Lanka International Journal of Buddhist Studies (SIJBS), the annual academic journal, by presenting the first copy to His Excellency the President of Sri Lanka at SIBA
  • 20-21 March 2011 - SIBA co-hosts International Buddhist Conference organized by High Commission of India in Sri Lanka