Dr. Ranjith Ihalanayake currently serves as the Dean and Head of Program at the Victoria University Business School (VUBS).

With a career spanning senior leadership roles since 2017, he has held positions such as Head of Discipline for Accounting, Economics, and Finance, Head of Postgraduate Courses, and Course Chair in MBA at VUBS.

Dr. Ihalanayake earned his PhD in Applied Economics and Master of Business Degrees from Victoria University, complemented by a Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) in Public Administration from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka.

Before his tenure at VU, Dr Ihalanayake served as a Senior Lecturer at the University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Sri Lanka, and held positions at various tertiary institutions in Australia and Sri Lanka. With expertise across economics, finance, statistics, and marketing, he brings extensive teaching experience to his roles.

In recent years, Dr. Ihalanayake has specialized in teaching postgraduate capstone units and commercial banking and finance at the undergraduate level. He has contributed to the development and delivery of subjects in VU's Transnational Education programs across Malaysia, China, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and Sri Lanka.

An active researcher, Dr. Ihalanayake's interests span applied economics, banking and finance, small business management, and tourism economics. His work is published in scholarly journals, and he has presented at international conferences. His current research focuses on foreign direct investment and economic growth, public finance and financial economics, tourism economics and taxation and bank performance management.

Dr. Ihalanayake also serves as a supervisor for several PhD students within the VU Research College. He is widely respected as an academic and leader in accounting, finance, and economics, dedicated to excellence in teaching, research, and community contribution.

Areas of expertise

  • Banking sector performances
  • Public finance and financial economics
  • Tourism economics and taxation
  • CGE modelling in tourism
  • Working capital management
  • Foreign direct investment

Contact details

+61 (3) 9919 4622


Book chapters

Ismail, F., King, B. and Ihalanayake, R. (2011) Host and Guest Perceptions of Tourism Impacts in Island Settings: A Malaysian Perspective. In: Island Tourism Sustainable Perspectives, Eds, Carlsen, J., and Butler, R., CABI

Ihalanayake, R. (2009) Awaiting Attention: Profiling Domestic Tourism Sector in Sri Lanka. In: Domestic Tourism in Asia: Diversity and Divergence, Ed. S. Singh, London, Earthscan Publishing Ltd.

Ihalanayake, R. (1998) Tourism between Australia and Sri Lanka. In: Glimpses of Sri Lankan and Australian Relations, (with A. Gamage & P. Lomax), Eds. R. Arambawela and C. Forster, Melbourne, Committee for Sri Lankan Inc.

Journal articles

Wakyereza, R. K. S., Kuledran, N., & Ihalanayake, R., (2018)  “Is Tourism a Tool for Poverty Reduction in a Developing Country: A Study on Uganda” Journal of Sustainability Science and Management.

Seelanatha, S.L., and Ihalanayake, R. (2017) ”War and Peace Times, Interest Margin and Commercial Bank Operations: A Case of Sri Lankan Banking Sector” Defence and Peace Economics (under revision).

Saleh, A. S., Verma, R., and Ihalanayake, R. (2017) “A Validation of Wagner’s Law: A Case Study of Sri Lanka”, International Journal of Economics and Business Research, Vol 14, No 1, 29-43.

Saleh, A. S., Assaf, A.G., Ihalanayake, R., and Lung, S. (2015) “A Panel Cointegration Analysis of the Impact of Tourism on Economic Growth: Evidence from the Middle East Region”, International Journal of Tourism Research, Vol 17, No 3, 209-220.

Ihalanayake, R. (2013) “Tourism Taxes and Negative Externalities in Tourism in Australia: A CGE Approach”, Corporate Ownership and Control, Vol 10, No 4, 199-214.

Ihalanayake, R. (2012) “Economic Effects of Tourism Tax Changes in Australia: Empirical Evidence from a Computable General Equilibrium Model”, Tourism Economics, Vol 18, No 1, 181-202.



Principal supervision of 1 PhD student and 1 DBA Student

Co-supervision of 2 PhD students


Co-supervision of 1 PhD student, 1 masters (by research) student

Research grants

Industry Grant of $12,100 from the City of Port Philip to conduct the Economic Assessment of St Kilda Festival 2013 (with Thu-Huong Nguyen, Lindsay Turner and Leonie Lockstone-Binney).

A research grant of $20,000 under the International Collaborative Research Grant Scheme with Central University of Finance and economics (CUFE) 2014 to investigate “Working Capital Management Practices (MCMP) in Small Businesses: A Comparative Study between China and Australia”.

Working Capital Management Practices in Small Businesses in Victoria, Victoria University Research Development Grant Scheme (VURDGS) (2012), $28,180.


The Best Paper Award, Global Tourism Conference (GTC) 2017, Terengganu, Malaysia 2017.

National Finalist of the Lecturer of the Year Competition 2008 conducted by Uni Jobs. Nominated as One of the Top Ten Lecturers from Victoria University in the above competition.

The Best Paper Award in Economics, 9th International Business Research Conference, Melbourne 2008.