Dr Dilum Dissanayake BSc, MEng, PhD, FHEA, MCIHT

Dr Dilum Dissanayake

School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences
Associate Professor in Human Geography and Transportation Planning

Dr. Dilum Dissanayake is an experienced academic with particular interest in transport planning and human Geography. Her passion for educating STEM careers means that she devotes time in developing research careers at Postdoctoral, PhD, as well as Postgraduate and Undergraduate degree levels. Dr Dissanayake’s ambition is to further advance knowledge and skills in transport planning and data analysis to discover innovative solutions to reverse climate change and its consequences. Her research is a blend of Transport (Human) Geography, Computing, Data mining, Mathematical modelling, Social sciences, and Behavioural sciences with a keen interest in behavioural change to reverse climate change through the innovations in transportation sector with attention to new mobility services, smart infrastructure, and efficient transport systems.


  • PhD (Transport Planning), Nagoya University, Japan (Thesis Title: Urban Transport Policy Analysis for Developing Countries Considering Household Choices of Modes, Trip-Chaining and Vehicle Ownership)
  • MEng (Infrastructure Planning and Management), Asian Institute of Technology, Thailand (Thesis Title: Management of Routine and Periodic Maintenance for Highway Pavements)
  • BSc (Hons) (Civil Engineering), University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka (Undergraduate Project: Productivity Study on Brickwork in Sri Lanka)
  • Diploma in Programming, Ins. of Data Management Computer Studies, Sri Lanka 


Birmingham Campus

  • 22035 – Sustainable Cities (PG module, 20 credits), Module Leader
  • 33562 – Contemporary Human Geography B (UG module, 20 credits), Contributor
  • 37527 – One-Planet Thinking, (UG module, 20 credits), Contributor
  • 37526 – Developing Solutions (UG module, 20 credits), Contributor
  • 37141 – Dissertation Labs for Human Geography and Planning (UG module), Contributor
  • 07945 – MSc Dissertations (Urban and Regional Studies) (PG module), Contributor
  • 38627 – UG Dissertations (Human Geography and Planning Research) (UG module), Contributor

Dubai Campus

  • 37259 – Sustainable Cities (PG module, 20 credits), Contributor
  • 37260 – The Planner in Contemporary Society (PG module, 20 credits), Contributor

Postgraduate supervision

I am accepting PhD applications in the areas of travel demand modelling and forecasting, behavioural change, electric and autonomous mobility and sustainable mobility (including walking and cycling).

Here is the list of my current and completed PhD students:

Hisham Makahleh (2nd year)
Shukurat Bankole (2nd year)
Janak Parmar (Cusano University, Italy, 3rd Year)
Huseyin Ayan (Newcastle University, 3rd Year)
Pound Meenapinunt (Newcastle University, 3rd Year)

Burke M. (Newcastle University, Submitted)
Chakravartty A. (Newcastle University, Submitted)
Wang H. (Newcastle University, Viva Completed)
Bostaji A.(2023; 2nd supervisor), Transport and the environment
Turner J. (2020, Main Supervisor), Trip sharing in rural communities
Akgun N. (2019, Main Supervisor), Transport safety
Ali F. (2018, Main Supervisor), Travel Behaviour,
Sykes P. (2018, 2nd Supervisor), Uncertainty in decision making
Yosritzal (2014, Main Supervisor), Travel Behaviour,
Alkaabi A. (2013, Main Supervisor), Traffic Incident Management
Widyastuti H. (2011, Main supervisor), Transport Safety


My research focuses on:

Travel behaviour analysis, Travel demand modelling and forecasting, Electric and Autonomus Vehicles, Investigating travel behaviour change, Value of travel time (VOTT) and its relationship with ICT use, Investigation of transport policies (transit subsidy, congestion pricing, telecommuting, land use planning), Infrastructure engineering and planning, Traffic incident management, Transport safety (valuation, child pedestrians, Willingness to pay), Transport and the environment, Transport and land use, Vehicle ownership modelling and forecasting, Developing country research (both safety, travel behaviour and tourism)

Methods and Models that I applied in my research:

  • Discrete choice techniques
  • Hazard-based duration models
  • Statistical analysis (Data factoring, clustering, and multiple corresponding analysis, Generalised linear models, multiple regression)
  • Theory of Planning Behaviour
  • Theory of Diffusion of Innovation
  • Natural Language Processing (NLP)
  • Data mining and Machine learning

Funded Projects (Current and previous):

  • CLEETS (2023-2028) – Funded by NSF (USA) and UKRI (UK); Co Investigator (from University of Birmingham) – £10m; consortium covers the UK (University of Birmingham and Cardiff University), and the Discovery Partners Institute, part of the University of Illinois System. I lead Transport Demand Management theme. Home - CLEETS Global Center (cleets-global-center.org)
  • Capitalisation (2021-23) – Funded by INTERREG North West Europe; Principal Investigator (from Newcastle University) – €392k; consortium covers the UK, Ireland, Netherlands and Belgium. I lead Transport Modelling Work Package. www.nweurope.eu/media/13359/list-of-approved-projects-2nd-call-for-cap.pdf
  • eHUBS (2019-2022) – Funded by INTERREG North West Europe; Principal Investigator (from Newcastle University) – €412k ; eHUBS is focusing on Travel Behaviour Change with 92 physical eHUBS infrastructure in Europe - consortium covers Netherland (consortia lead), Germany, UK, Belgium, France. https://www.nweurope.eu/projects/project-search/ehubs-smart-shared-green-mobility-hubs/
  • EPSRC DTC funding (2019-2023) – £57k – PhD studentship started in September 2019. The focus on the urban transport infrastructure focuses most conducive to electric Micro-mobility. This project is giving attention to COVID 19 impacts on cycling and how cycle flows changing before and during COVID-19 with particular attention to the UK government initiatives of introducing pop-up lanes. https://gtr.ukri.org/projects?ref=studentship-2281091
  • Duo India Professor Fellowship to research with Professor Indrajit Ghosh at IIT Roorkee (2020-22) – Funded by DUO-India Fellowship Programme. This fellowship will explore the road user behaviour of pedestrians and cyclists with a particular focus to road safety. https://ir.iitr.ac.in/blog/posts/56/
  • SPARC Project (2020-2022) – Road Tolling - Funded by SPARC Scheme (India); the consortia consist of BITS Pilani, Cardiff University and Newcastle University. https://www.bits-pilani.ac.in/hyderabad/prasantasahu/ProjectsandGrants
  • Teaching Funding (2017) – Teaching and computer workshops for Stage 4 students at Durham University - £6k
  • JSPS Bridge Fellowship (2013) – Funded by JSPS to carry out research with 4 Japanese Universities - £12k
  • Research fund from Gateshead Council (2007-2008) – for a student project – £500
  • Catherine Cookson Foundation (2005-2006) – £2.5K

Other activities

External Examination (Masters and Undergraduate Courses)

  • University of Cardiff (MSc Transport and Planning, 2022-25)
  • University of Glasgow (MSc in Urban Studies, 2016-20)
  • London South Bank University (both BEng & MEng in Civil Engineering, 2015-20) 

PhD/MPhil Examination 

  • Gupta N. (External Examiner – School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, October 2023)
  • Singha K. (External Examiner – School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, September 2023)
  • Coenegrachts E. (External Examiner – University of Antwerp, July 2023)
  • Faruque S. M. (External Examiner – Napier University, June 2023)
  • AL Otaibi S.  (External Examiner – University of Loughborough, December 2021)
  • Hutchinson L. (External Examiner – University of Southampton, September 2020)
  • Watson I. (External Examiner – London South Bank University, February 2020) 
  • Sam E. (External Examiner – Hasselt University, October 2019) 
  • Ubaidillah N. (External Examiner – ITS, University of Leeds, September 2019)  
  • Afghari A. P. (External Examiner – University of Queensland, October 2018)
  • O’Brien J. (Internal Examiner, October 2017)
  • Chen W. (Internal Examiner, April 2016)
  • Dharmowijoyo D. (External Examiner – KTH Stockholm, January 2016)
  • Narh A (Internal Examiner – PhD Viva held in October 2015)
  • Park D. S. (External Examiner – University of Southampton, January 2015)
  • Hamad M. (Internal Examiner – PhD Viva held in November 2014)
  • Caygil M. (Internal Examiner – PhD Viva held in January 2014)
  • Cairns J. (Internal Examiner – PhD Viva held in March 2013)
  • Wedagama P. (Internal Examiner – PhD Viva held in June 2005) 

Esteem indicators/other activities 

  • Remarkable Women in Transport 2022 international award (Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative)
  • Duo-India Professor fellowship (2020-22)
  • Amey Prize 2019 to my dissertation supervisee (MSc Transport Modelling): Mr Mikael Xia)
  • Jacobs Prize 2019 to my dissertation supervisee (MSc Transport Planning): Mr Swapnil Fulari)
  • Academic Editor of the Journal of Advanced Transportation (2018-)
  • JSPS Grant Evaluator for the Bridge Fellowship Programme (2018-)
  • Associate Editor of the IET ITS journal (2017-)
  • EPSRC Grant Evaluator: a member their peer-review college (2017-)
  • Session Chair, UTSG 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2021, and 2022 Conferences, UK (2011-)
  • External Grant Evaluator: MRC, British Academy, and ESRC schemes
  • The COLAS CIHT Award to my MEng dissertation supervisee (Lindsey McConnell) (2015)
  • The Newton Fund Travel Award (2013)
  • JSPS Bridge Fellowship to pursue research in Japan (2012-13)
  • Deputy Stage 4 Tutor, UG, SOE (CIVIL), Newcastle University (2009-17)
  • Deputy Degree Programme Director, PGT, SOE (CIVIL), Newcastle University (2008-2014)
  • Seminar Organiser, TORG, SOE (CIVIL), Newcastle University (2008-2016)


Recent publications


Liao, F, Vleugel, J, Bösehans, G, Dissanayake, D, Thorpe, N, Bell, M, van Arem, B & Homem de Almeida Correia, G 2024, 'Mode substitution induced by electric mobility hubs: Results from Amsterdam', Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment, vol. 129, 104118. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trd.2024.104118

Bösehans, G, Kavta, K, Bell, MC & Dissanayake, D 2023, 'Exploring the potential of shared electric vehicles from e‐mobility hubs as an alternative for commute and food shopping trips', IET Intelligent Transport Systems. https://doi.org/10.1049/itr2.12389

Tavakoli Kashani, A, Rakhshani Moghadam, M, Taheri, A, Müller, G & Dissanayake, DA 2023, 'How does the safety performance of different vehicle types and weights affect the severity of a driver’s injury?', International Journal of Crashworthiness. https://doi.org/10.1080/13588265.2023.2230636

Bösehans, G, Bell, M, Thorpe, N & Dissanayake, D 2023, 'Something for every one? - An investigation of people's intention to use different types of shared electric vehicle', Travel Behaviour and Society, vol. 30, pp. 178-191. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tbs.2022.09.004

Burke, M, Dissanayake, D & Bell, M 2022, 'Cluster analysis of daily cycling flow profiles during COVID-19 lockdown in the UK', Journal of Advanced Transportation, vol. 2022, 4217431. https://doi.org/10.1155/2022/4217431

Thibenda, M, Wedagama, DMP & Dissanayake, D 2022, 'Drivers’ attitudes to road safety in the South East Asian cities of Jakarta and Hanoi: socio-economic and demographic characterisation by multiple correspondence analysis', Safety Science, vol. 155, 105869. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2022.105869

Akgün-Tanbay, N, Campisi, T, Tanbay, T, Tesoriere, G & Dissanayake, D 2022, 'Modelling road user perceptions towards safety, comfort, and chaos at shared space: the Via Maqueda case study, Italy', Journal of Advanced Transportation, vol. 2022, 4979496. https://doi.org/10.1155/2022/4979496

Akgün, N, Daniels, S, Bell, MC, Nuyttens, N, Thorpe, N & Dissanayake, D 2021, 'Exploring regional differences in cyclist safety at roundabouts: a comparative study between the UK (based on Northumbria data) and Belgium', Accident Analysis and Prevention, vol. 150, 105902. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2020.105902


Heidrich, O, Dissanayake, D, Lambert, S & Hector, G 2022, 'How cities can drive the electric vehicle revolution', Nature Electronics, vol. 5, no. 1, pp. 11-13. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41928-021-00709-3

Conference article

Wiradnyana, IGNP, Suthanaya, PA, Wedagama, DMP, Yana, AAGA & Dissanayake, D 2021, 'Analysing the choice and pattern of needs of transportation mode for domestic tourists in Bali', IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, vol. 673, no. 1, 012019. https://doi.org/10.1088/1755-1315/673/1/012019

Yosritzal, Purnawan, Lovita, M & Dissanayake, D 2021, 'Mitigation of traffic disaster by analyzing motorist's movement behavior based on an image captured by a drone', E3S Web of Conferences, vol. 331, 06003. https://doi.org/10.1051/e3sconf/202133106003

Kariyana, IM, Suthanaya, PA, Wedagama, DMP, Ariawan, IMA & Abeyakone Dissanayake, D 2021, 'The influence of motorcycle behavior on saturation flow rate at signalized intersections with and without exclusive stopping space for motorcycle (ESSM)', IOP Conference Series: Earth and Environmental Science, vol. 673, no. 1, 012020. https://doi.org/10.1088/1755-1315/673/1/012020

Conference contribution

Bankole, SO, Donaldson, D, Dissanayake, D & Ferranti, E 2023, Electric Mobility in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Preparedness from the Consumer Point of View. in 2023 IEEE PES/IAS PowerAfrica., 10363275, IEEE Power Engineering Society Conference and Exposition in Africa, PowerAfrica, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), 2023 IEEE PES/IAS PowerAfrica, PowerAfrica 2023, Marrakech, Morocco, 6/11/23. https://doi.org/10.1109/PowerAfrica57932.2023.10363275

Campisi, T, Akgün-Tanbay, N, Md Nahiduzzaman, K & Dissanayake, D 2021, Uptake of e-Scooters in Palermo, Italy: Do the Road Users Tend to Rent, Buy or Share? in O Gervasi, B Murgante, S Misra, C Garau, I Blečić, D Taniar, BO Apduhan, AM Rocha, E Tarantino & CM Torre (eds), Computational Science and Its Applications – ICCSA 2021: 21st International Conference, Cagliari, Italy, September 13–16, 2021, Proceedings, Part V. 1 edn, Theoretical Computer Science and General Issues, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol. 12953, Springer, pp. 669-682, 21st International Conference on Computational Science and Its Applications, ICCSA 2021, Virtual, Online, 13/09/21. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-86976-2_46

Review article

Makahleh, HY, Ferranti, EJS & Dissanayake, D 2024, 'Assessing the Role of Autonomous Vehicles in Urban Areas: A Systematic Review of Literature', Future Transportation, vol. 4, no. 2, pp. 321-348. https://doi.org/10.3390/futuretransp4020017

View all publications in research portal