The first light of the Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Sri Lanka, dawned during the seminar on Surveying and Land Economy held at the BMICH, Colombo, Sri Lanka, in October 1974, organised by the Commonwealth Association of Surveying and Land Economy (CASLE). This three day Seminar approved a resolution moved by Mr. James Nisbet FRICS, which stated "Bearing in mind the importance of the construction industry to the social and economic development of Sri Lanka, the Seminar urges the Quantity Surveying practitioners to ensure without delay the provision of proper education and training facilities for Quantity Surveyors and Quantity Surveying technicians at the universities and technical institutions".
There were only five professionally qualified Quantity Surveyors in Sri Lanka at that time namely, late Professor H. P. S. Caldera, Mr. T. P. Miskin and Mr. H. D. Chandrasena (all from Buildings Department), Mr. Prasad Senarathne (from the State Engineering Corporation) and Mr. S. Pulendran (fromthe National Water Supply and Drainage Board). All of them actively assisted the main local partner of the Seminar, the Surveyors Institute of Sri Lanka.
Inaugural meeting of the Institute of Quantity Surveyors Sri Lanka was held on 4th July 1983 at the office of Mr. T. P. Miskin with the participation of the following Quantity Surveyors.
- 1. Prof. H. P. S. Caldera
- 2. Mr. T. P. Miskin
- 3. Mr. H. D. Chandrasena
- 4. Mr. S. Gnanasekaram
- 5. Mr. R. E. Allen
- 6. Mrs. Chitra Weddikkara.
At the second meeting held on 1st December 1983, following were elected as the first office bearers of the Institute.
- President - Prof. H. P. S. Caldera
- Vice President - Mr. H. D. Chandrasena
- Secretary - Mr. T. P. Miskin
- Treasurer - Mr. G. S. W. Jayaweera
The Institute commenced conducting of Tests of Professional Competence for eligible practicing Quantity Surveyors to admit successful candidates as Corporate Members. Mrs. Chitra Weddikkara, Mr. D. G. Jayarathne and Mr. A. D. P. Gunarathne were the first batch of Corporate Members admitted through this process in May 1985. The new route for corporate membership thus provided the opportunity for senior practicing Quantity Surveyors to become Corporate Members of the Institute. It is noteworthy that the Institute’s initial application for membership of the Organization of Professional Associations (OPA) was not considered due to the inadequate number of Corporate Members. Subsequently the Institute was admitted as a member association of the OPA in 1998.
The Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Sri Lanka was incorporated as a limited liability entity under the Companies Act No. 17 of 1982 on 18th April 1986 and the Quantity Surveyors who subscribed to this incorporation were:
- 1. Prof. H. P. S. Caldera.
- 2. Mr. T. P. Miskin.
- 3. Mr. Mr. H. D. Chandrasena.
- 4. Mr. S. G. W. Jayaweera.
- 5. Mr. S. Gnanasekaram.
- 6. Mrs. Chitra Weddikkara.
- 7. Mr. A. D. P. Gunaratne.
- 8. Mr. D. G. Jayarathna.
The Institute is admitted as a member organisation of international professional bodies such as Commonwealth Association of Surveying and Land Economy (CASLE), Pacific Association of Quantity Surveyors (PAQS) and International Cost Engineering Council (ICEC). Institute also has a Reciprocity Agreement with the Australian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (AIQS) for the benefit of members of both professional bodies. It is during the tenure of of Presidency of Professor (Mrs.) Chitra Weddikkara who is also the longest serving President of the Institute, that above affiliations and agreements materialised.
In 2007, the Institute was incorporated by an Act of Parliament, named Institute of Quantity Surveyors, Sri Lanka Incorporation Act No. 20 of 2007. The Act not only conferred on the Institute statutory incorporation as a professional body but also elevated it as the sole professional body representing the Quantity Surveying professionals in Sri Lanka. In this aspect, the Institute gracefully acknowledge the services rendered by Dr. E.M.G. de Zylva the then CEO of the Construction Guarantee Fund for his valuable assistance and guidance in preparing the draft Bill for incorporation. The Institute also respectfully records the invaluable sponsorship of Hon. P. Dayaratne and Hon.Keheliya Rambukwella in presenting the Bill to the Parliament.
From the inception the institute was working in close association with state bodies under the Ministry of Construction and Engineering Services, such as Institute for Construction Training and Development (ICTAD) and Centre for Housing, Planning and Development (CHPB). IQSSL was represented in almost all working committees on formulating Specification of Works and Standard Bidding Documents. The Institute is also a member of the Steering Committee for revising the ICTAD Publications.
In the field of Quantity Surveying education the Institute with its founding professional members pioneered the Degree Course at the University of Moratuwa and National Certificate in Technology in Quantity Surveying (NCT-QS), through the untiring efforts of late Professor H.P.S. Caldera, Mr. T.P. Miskin and Mr. H.D. Chandrasena acting under the guidance of late Professor Rupert Peiris, the then Dean of the Faculty of Architecture of University of Moratuwa and Engineer Conred Tissera, the former Senior Assistant Secretary of the Ministry of Local Government, Housing & Construction and the then Chairman of ICTAD.
Among the objectives of the Institute following are of paramount importance;
- (a) To protect and promote the interests, status, welfare, rights and privileges of the professionals and interests of the public in relation to the profession of Quantity Surveying.
- (b) To advise and communicate with public authorities on matters relating to Quantity Surveying.
- (c) To undertake professional education and training of persons intimating to become Quantity Surveyors and to prescribe and approve courses of studies and qualifying examinations for membership.
Management, control and administration of affairs of the Institute is vested in the Governing Council consisting of President, Immediate Past President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Assistant Secretary, Assistant Treasurer and Eight (8) Council Members.
As the disipline of quantity surveying is closely fused with the consistently shifting and progressive nature of the contemporary world, adopting a regularly evolving technology-oriented framework allows harvesting valuable benefits. This is the primary driving force that propels IQSSL to plan, implement, and enhance its own official website and online platform, social media, and professional seminars on technological phenomena that further strengthens the capabilities, productivity, and efficiency of quantity surveyors and firms.