The Climate Impact Research Capacity and Leadership Enhancement (CIRCLE) is a programme to develop the skills and research results for early career African researchers in the field of climate ch​ange.

Launched in 2014, The UK Department for International Development has provided £ 4.85 million for this programme.


The African Academy of Sciences’ AESA and the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) are providing a total of 100 scholarships to 40 postmasters and 60 postdoctoral researchers in Africa in three cohorts to study the impact of climate change over a period of five years.

The AAS and the ACU selected the first group of CIRLCE Visiting Fellows (CVF) in 2015 and the second in 2016. A third cohort will be announced in 2017.

The CIRCLE Visiting Fellows will spend a year in another university or research organisation in Africa studying the impact of climate change in five thematic areas:

  • Agriculture
  • Energy
  • Health and livelihoods
  • Water
  • Policy

The programme also collaborates with African universities and research institutions to strengthen their research ecosystems.

You can read about the experiences and publication of CIRCLE Fellows in Activities and impact and other publications sections of the AESA website.

CIRCLE Institutions

Key achievements

  • To date, 63 Fellowships awarded
  • Fellowships have facilitated 14 publications by CIRCLE Visiting Fellows
  • 30 review articles, blog posts, conference proceedings, book chapters and articles in peer reviewed journals published from CIRCLE funded research
  • Eighty percent of Fellows have presented their CIRCLE funded research at international conferences across the globe
  • CIRCLE’s goal is to achieve a 50:50 ratio of Fellowships for men and women; to date women have received 48% of the Fellowships