Crick Africa Network

The Crick Africa Network sustainably increases research capacity in Africa to tackle health problems locally and globally.


The Crick Africa Network (CAN) supports the development of equitable research capacity in Africa.

There is an imbalance between the well-funded research laboratories in the Global North and the relative scarcity of resources in Africa. 

This is made more significant by the scale of health challenges facing African countries. Infectious disease outbreaks, the effects of climate change and mental health problems are rising in the countries that are least equipped to make discoveries that could help their populations.

African scientists have the potential to make a vital contribution to tackling these challenges. In 2017, we established CAN as an equitable partnership with institutions in The Gambia, Ghana, South Africa and Uganda to shift the balance in favour of African scientists working in Africa.



A key part of our programme is providing competitive fellowships to support African scientists through the transition to becoming independent researchers in Africa.

The first round of fellows were funded by the UK Research & Innovation Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). Since completing their fellowships, they have developed their research in infectious diseases, and built training capacity for the next generation of African scientists.

Our next round of fellowships will open for applications in August 2023, supported by LifeArc. Translating basic research into real-world applications is a key part of our mission, and LifeArc will help our fellows to develop their research into clinicial, commercial or environmental benefits.

In the future, we will also support Technology Development Fellows – training posts for African-based scientists in the management and development of science and technology platforms, skills which are critically lacking across much of the African continent.

Meet our alumni

Our first 18 fellows are now leading research programmes and developing capacity across infectious disease research.

Meet our alumni >

The story so far

£14m awarded to fellows in grant funding
97 students supervised
8 independent research groups established in Africa
82 publications published
36 more publications submitted or in preparation
1 biotech spin-out launched

Interested in supporting our work?

Contact Rebecca Wilson, head of strategic partnerships.