Secretary of Defence speaks at the opening of the INSSSL office.
"Distinguished scholars, Director General, Board members of the institute, ladies and gentleman.
First let me take this opportunity to wish you a prosperous and happy new year!
It gives me great pleasure to officially open the new office premises of the Institute of National Security Studies Sri Lanka. Today as a nation we have taken an important step by developing and opening the research office of the premiere national think tank under the Ministry of Defence with the leadership of President H.E.Maithripala Sirisena.
The world that we live is engulfed with countless security threats, ranging from the 2016 Dhaka hostage situation to the border conflicts of regional powers that continue to unfold. It is vital to recognize the importance of security think tanks in the region and beyond. Think tanks play a pivotal role to bring in academic research input to government policy and it acts as a bridge between research and policy. In a volatile world marked by changes in geopolitics, slow-to-adapt institutions and the fragmentation of state power, security think tanks are crucial in improving the quality of debate and helping countries understand each other. At a time of divergence in the international system, think tanks - especially when they work across countries in collaboration - can be a constructive resource.
As a country that has fought a civil war for almost three decades and situated at a significant geo-strategic location, it is vital and important to understand internal and external threats to our nation. INSSSL input and assessments based on high quality research will be appreciated in this regard in the near future. Scholarly talent in this country, including one of the nation’s greatest asset, our youth could work in security research and it is important to invite the best academic minds to join hands with our institute.
Research is paramount for the development of a country and I don’t need to explain this importance to the audience. Without research inputs, research reports, research publications and journals we will not be able to understand the national, regional and beyond the region’s strategic thinking. Research in security will help us to formulate and identify how we should orchestrate our own national security.
I am pleased to see the institute is launching its Defence Review 2017 today in a short span of time, compiled of research papers from national and international scholar’s from around the world. I wish all success to the institute and I am certain we will develop this as a leading think tank in the years to come.
I thank the Director General, institute staff and all the other local and international scholars who supported this institute.