Marga Institute

The Marga Institute is an independent non-profit centre for Development Studies established in 1972 under the Companies Act of Sri Lanka- the first of its kind in Sri Lanka. From its inception it has conducted a sustained and wide- ranging programme of multi-disciplinary research on issues and problems of development. It has drawn on the three main disciplines in social science, Economics, Sociology and Political science, and has developed a framework of analysis incorporating all the important criteria of human development.


Building Civil Society and Media Capacities for Budget Transparency

The project identified one of the foremost governance challenges as being enhancing accountability and improving transparency in regard to government budgeting. The absence of a proper platform to debate government spending strategy and contestability of expenditure allocations among various units at different levels of government remains a considerable lacuna that contributes directly to the lack of accountability. A critical gap in ensuring accountability was identified as the lack of civic engagement in the budgeting processes. Together they make for lack of transparency and an ensuing accountability gap in the governance of public resources at the different levels of government. More

Development Research & Education

Development Research

The Institute has defined its research framework and research priorities through a continuous and sustained process in which it draws on the intellectual capital it has gained and the research networks it has established over the long period of its existence. These have enabled it to be in regular contact with the emerging global priorities as they get defined by the international community bilateral donors and the multi-lateral institutions.


Master of Arts in Development Studies and Public Policy
The Master of Arts (MA) in Development Studies and Public Policy is a programme introduced by the Marga Institute in collaboration with the Open University of Sri Lanka. More
Research methodology more
Statistics in Research with Guide to SPSS more


Marga Publications include the research work of the Institute, the Marga journal and the Translation Programme. These could be purchased from the Marga bookshop (Publication Division) or at leading bookstores in and around the City of Colombo. More

World Bank Publications

The Marga Institute was appointed by The International Bank for Reconstruction and Development as a Distributor of selected Bank information products and services. Any World Bank Publication could be ordered through the Marga Institute at 50% discount on the US$ price. More

Publications of the Marga Institute as at June 2011 More

Civil Society Forum / Human Development Report

The Marga Civil Society Forum seeks to promote and strengthen a sustained national dialogue in which concerned groups and individuals in civil society would be engaged in the analysis, monitoring and evaluation of development processes, policies and outcomes. More

Library and Documentation

The Marga Library has a wide collection of books and journals on Development Studies and on Sri Lanka. More

Past Events

The Marga Institute organized a Panel Discussion on Constitutional Reforms on the 25th of September which was held at the Marga Auditorium More

International Book Fair 2013 More

Marga Institute hosts a Seminar on "The Numbers Game" -Politics of Retributive Justice More

A Seminar was jointly organized by Marga Institute and the World Bank on Education & Social Cohesion on the 28th of September 2012 at the Marga Auditorium


Elke Kruse-Hannak,GTZ Office
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Prof. Lakshman Ratnayake
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Prof. Aruni Weerasinghe 
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Empowering Youth to Bridge the Ethnic Divide through School “Twinning” programme More

A seminar on "Post-war Accountability and Reconciliation: Redefining Sri Lankan Identity” was held on 9th February, 2012 at the Marga Auditorium More

A Seminar was organized by the Marga Institute on the 21st of July 2011 to review the report of the UN Secretary General’s Panel of Experts on accountability in Sri Lanka PDF Report

The Working paper presented at this seminar by Dr. Godfrey Gunatilleke Truth and Accountability

Reading Room

Pension schemes for private sector workers More

Article by Yvonne Schokman regarding Feminisation of poverty More

Negotiating Development in an Evolving Democracy - Lessons from Sri Lanka. (By Godfrey Gunatilleke) More

Equity in Health Care- the Case of Diabetes in Sri Lanka More