Dr Nirosha Hewa Wellalage

Nirosha Hewa Wellalage

Senior Lecturer in Finance
Undergraduate Convenor, Finance


Corporate Governance; Corporate Social Responsibility; Finance; Gender; Sustainability

Small Business ; Developing economies

Qualifications: BSC, University of Ireland; MBA, University of Keele, UK, PhD in Finance, University of Waikato

Contact Details

Email: [email protected]
Room: MSB.2.08
Phone: +64 7 838 4196

Papers Taught

About Nirosha

Dr Nirosha Hewa Wellalage has had several years of experience in the finance industry before moving to the University of Waikato.

Dr Nirosha’s main research centres on issues related to corporate finance practices. Her main research goal as a researcher is to explore the ways marginalised firms, such as micro, small and medium firms (SMEs), firms owned by females and ethnic minorities, and refugees financing their firms and find ways to sustainable in long run while contributing the economic development.

Nirosha has published 15 refereed journal articles in the last three years, including 14 in A ranked or FT 50-ranked journals (13 as lead author). Her research has been cited more than 750 times, according to Google Scholar. She has published in leading international journals including the Journal of Business Ethics, the Small Business Economics, the International Review of Financial Analysis, the International Review of Economics and Finance, the Journal of Evolutionary Economics, the Finance Research Letters and the Business Strategy and the Environment.

The publications, research awards and research grants demonstrate her ability to develop and implement a viable and relevant research agenda. She has presented her research at major international finance conferences and has received several best paper awards. Dr Nirosha was awarded the International Corporate Governance Network (ICGN) outstanding scholar award, Young Researcher Award-Baku World Science Forum, and Early Career Research Excellence Award from Modelling and Simulation Society of Australia and New Zealand (MSSANZ). Currently, she is a principal researcher for three research grants from the Accounting and Finance Association in Australia and New Zealand (AFAANZ). Also, Dr Nirosha recently received a Lottery Community Sector Research grant with researchers from the University of Canterbury and Refugee Orientation Centre, New Zealand.  Nirosha also served as an examiner for several Masters and PhD theses. She regularly reviews papers for top-ranked journals and serves the Australasian Accounting, Business and Finance Journal as Associate Editor. She has held honorary visiting fellowships at the University of Wollongong, Australia and Kelaniya University, Sri Lanka.

Dr Nirosha has successfully supervised seven PhD candidates to completion and all of them have since secured academic positions in tertiary institutions. Nirosha is keen on supervising interesting empirical PhD projects in finance. Supervision queries related broadly to the following research areas will be prioritised:

  • SMEs and family firms
  • Financial crimes, bribes, and corruption
  • Firm-level innovations and emerging markets
  • Financial inclusion of minority groups (SMEs, women, and refugees)
  • Firm-level CSR, sustainability, and access to financing

Research Supervised

Doctor of Philosophy

  1. Dilip Jha Kumar, PhD thesis- Improving Corporate Governance in Nepalese Financial institutions to Promote Growth and Performance -Passed 2017
  2. Francis Agyekum, PhD thesis A trajectory of financial inclusion towards economic inclusion; empirical evidence from Licsghana as a case- Passed 2017
  3. Samir Harith, PhD thesis – Full enrolment The Development of a Performance Evaluation Framework for Start-up Entrepreneurship Financing Initiatives- Passed 2018
  4. Yimei Man, PhD thesis – Full enrolment Agency cost and earning management in Chinese listed companies -Passed 2019
  5. Polypailin Kijasiwat, PhD thesis – Full enrolment Capital Structure and Financial Performance: Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Thailand -Passed 2019
  6. Mercy Kiremu, Phd thesis-Climate Finance Instruments and Kenyan Agriculture-Submitted 2019 (Ongoing)

I also regularly supervise Summer Research Scholarships.

Research Interests

Corporate Governance,

Small Business Finance

CSR and Sustainability

Emerging Markets

Recent Publications

  • Hewa Wellalage, N., & Kumar, V. (2021). Environmental performance and bank lending: Evidence from unlisted firms. Business Strategy and the Environment, 30(7), 3309-3329. doi:10.1002/bse.2804

  • Hewa Wellalage, N., Boubaker, S., Hunjra, A. I., & Verhoeven, P. (2021). The gender gap in access to finance: Evidence from the COVID-19 pandemic. Finance Research Letters, online, 102329. doi:10.1016/

  • Hewa Wellalage, N., Kumar, V., Hunjra, A., & Al-Faryan, M. (2021). Environmental performance and firm financing during COVID-19 outbreaks: Evidence from SMEs. Finance Research Letters, online, 102568. doi:10.1016/

  • Hewa Wellalage, N., Hunjra, A., Manita, R., & Locke, S. (2021). Information communication technology and financial inclusion of innovative entrepreneurs. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 163, 13 pages. doi:10.1016/j.techfore.2020.120416

Find more research publications by Nirosha Hewa Wellalage