Group photo of the Crick African Network fellows.


The Crick African Network is a £6.8m programme tackling the burden of infectious disease in Africa by building research capacity on the continent.

Via our innovative and flexible postdoctoral fellowship programme, five partner institutes in Africa are working with the Crick to support 18 African scientists through the transition to becoming independent researchers and future African research leaders.

The programme is funded through the UK Research & Innovation Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF). The grant commenced on 1 October 2017 and will conclude on 31 March 2023.

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Our work

Training workshops and symposia

To establish the partnership, the Crick African Network delivered four collaborative events across each of the African partner institutions in their respective countries between December 2017 and March 2018.

Each event had a three-day programme which comprised of a one-day scientific symposium open to all local staff and students, and a two-day research methods workshop targeted at around 20 postdoctoral scientists in each location.

These involved updates on the latest research taking place across partners, as well as advanced training in grant-writing.

4 research methods workshops were attended by 83 African postdoctoral researchers of 15 different nationalities.

Postdoctoral fellowships

The main feature of the Crick African Network is the delivery of 18 African Career Accelerator awards, over the course of three years.

Each individual award has a duration of around two and a half years, with the time being spent between the Crick and one of the five African partner institutes. Fellowships have a value of approximately £200k each.

During their individual awards, fellows have access to state-of-the-art research facilities as well as advanced training opportunities to drive their own research agendas.

They are supported to make the transition to research independence through training in leadership, grant writing and technical skills.

Fellows also submit grant applications in order to make the transition to becoming independent researchers based on the African continent, thereby becoming internationally and locally networked future African research leaders in the infectious diseases of poverty. 

12 Crick group leaders have mentored fellows.
77 person months have been spent at the Crick by fellows.

The story so far

The programme alumni have been progressing their own careers by furthering their research in infectious diseases, as well as building training capacity for the next generation of African scientists, using the skills they have developed during their fellowships.

By March 2022:

3 fellows have used their fellowship to relocate their research back to the African continent
18 careers have been maintained throughout the Covid-19 pandemic
59 papers have been published by fellows
£1,643,310 in external funding has been secured by fellows
2 fellows have secured positions as STP leads at their institutions
1 biotech start-up has been founded


Crick African Network partner logos