Archaeolanka is the official webpage of Raj Somadeva, Professor in Archaeology and Field Archaeologist- cum – Epigraphist in the Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology, University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka. This page seeks to present timely research information including books, articles, fieldwork updates, and public presentations focussing on archaeology and history in Sri Lanka, authored by him.
- Raj Somadeva entered the University of Kelaniya in 1982 and followed a Bachelor of Arts (BA) Degree in Archaeology.
- In 1986 he won a Second Class Upper division Honors Degree from the Faculty of Social Science.
He joined the Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology as an assistant lecturer in 1989. Raj Somadeva has completed his Master of Philosophy Degree (MPhil) in 1994 at the same University. He earned his Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Degree from the Department of African and Comparative Archaeology in the Faculty of Philosophy of the Uppsala University in Sweden in 2006.
Subsequently, his thesis titled ‘Urban Origins in Southern Sri Lanka’ was accepted and published as a volume of their publication series on Global Archaeology in 2006. In 1990 he was invited by the German Institute of Comparative Archaeology (KAVA) in Bonn as a visiting research fellow. He was a Charles Wallace Research Fellow (2005) of the Institute of Archaeology at the University of London. Among his publications are of Urban Origins in Southern Sri Lanka (2009), Archaeology of Uda Walava Basin (2010), The Nilgiriseya Survey (2012), Archaeology of Mountains (2014), World Civilizations (in Sinhala) (2016). His publication titled ”Rock Paintings and Engraving Sites in Sri Lanka won the State Literary award for the best academic publication (English) in the year 2013.
He won the Vice Chancellor’s award of the Kelaniya University for the best researcher in the years 2015 and 2018. Raj Somadeva has published more than 50 research articles both locally and internationally. He has actively contributed to the compilation of the School History curriculum revisions held in 2014. Raj Somadeva is also contributing his service to the Central Cultural Fund of the Ministry of Education as a Project Director of the Cultural Triangle in Southern province. And he introduced Forensic Archaeology to the country. He was invited to carry out the forensic investigations of the Mass grave recovered from the Matale General Hospital premises and his report was well received internationally.
Now he is serving as the Consultant Professor in Forensic Archaeology of the Mass grave recovered in Mannar which is the most controversial forensic investigations in the country. Professor Somadeva is currently being serving as a Senior Professor in Archaeology in the Postgraduate Institute of Archaeology in Colombo and is a founder Fellow of the Sri Lanka Council of Archaeologists. He is also a life member of the Society of South Asian Archaeologists based in New Delhi.