Forum of African Researchers in the Diaspora (FARID)

Thursday 27 April 2023, 9:00am to 4:00pm


Lancaster Environment Centre, Lancaster University, Lancaster, UK, LA1 4YQ - View Map

Open to

External Organisations, Postgraduates, Public, Staff


Free to attend - registration required

Event Details

This symposium aims to increase the strategic engagement of the African Diaspora UK Research Community for Scientific Innovation and Sustainability in Africa. The keynote speakers are Dr Ahmed Hamdy and Dr Joanna Newman MBE FRSA.

Symposium Objectives

The objectives of this symposium are:

  • To increase the strategic engagement of the African Diaspora communities and to use their expertise, skills and resources to enhance the science, technology and innovation profile and capacity of the African continent.
  • To provide a holistic umbrella where the current, varied and sometimes unstructured African Diaspora STI programmes are coordinated, supported and enhanced for increased and sustainable impact.
  • To provide a soft landing and strategic platform that encourages the contribution, participation and investment from African researchers in the Diaspora towards continental agenda and economic growth driven by STI activities.
  • To provide a basis for the celebration and showcase of the exploits and successes of African researchers in the Diaspora and to use it for promoting peer learning, knowledge transfer and capacity building in the African continent.
  • To engage with African reseachers in the Diaspora under special programmes with strategic objectives of increasing their sense of belonging, combating disenfranchisement and disconnection from the African continent, and enhancing the brain gain potential of this population.
  • To provide a foundation to work with African researchers in the Diaspora to increase the strategic collaborations with international institutions and organisations for the benefit of the African continent.

Expected outcomes

  • Devise and develop a participatory strategy for the African researcher Diaspora
  • Increase participation and commitment of African researchers in the Diaspora towards Africa's development
  • Align African researchers in the Diaspora with Africa’s abundant research and development opportunities
  • Increase the level of awareness of the Diaspora to ASRIC and its activities.


The realisation of the establishment and inauguration of the African Union Scientific Research and Innovation Council (ASRIC) in 2018 with the election of its Bureau, marked a new chapter in realization and operationalization of the African Dream – the Africa Agenda 2063. This brought high expectations and trust in Africa’s scientific human capital to confront Africa’s needs and challenges, including the response to the Agenda 2063 aspirations. ASRIC is mandated to promote scientific research and innovation and to address the challenges of socio-economic development across the African continent.

To effectively drive the ASRIC mandate, there is need for a systematic analysis of Africa’s challenges as they cut across the various countries. Strategic plans and actions are being developed by ASRIC to respond and eliminate the impact of such challenges while building on Africa’s scientists from within and outside the continent to bolster its development.

ASRIC is the highest advisory body for Science, Technology and Innovation on the continent and is recognized by the African Union (AU) and has successfully held three Congresses that have brought together the largest congregation of scientists, policy experts, industry experts from within Africa and from the Diaspora. This presents unique opportunities and platform to mobilize African research excellence to advance Africa’s development; to build sustainable continental research-policy nexuses, and mobilize resources to support research activities and programmes. ASRIC is now a formidable force to be reckoned with given its disposition as an international organization where its functions and mandate cover the entire continent of Africa with renowned scientists that guide, advise, and decide on the continent’s future of science, technology and innovation.

The current ASRIC movement of combating COVID-19 epitomizes the attachment of the Diaspora to the African continent, where a large number of our Diaspora have actively participated in research and development. As a result, the drive to integrate the African Diaspora is critical to the AU, where in 2003, the AU amended its Charter so as to encourage the full participation of the African Diaspora as an important part of the continent in order to develop the continent. This has paved the way to launch a call for more participation of Diaspora not only in the movement but to lead and contribute effectively to Africa's Agenda 2063 aspirational achievements.

Against this backdrop and building on the successes of the ASRIC, there is a need to build a roadmap for engaging with more of the Diaspora and to consult with them on the most relevant ways they can participate actively in shaping Africa’s future and prosperity. To support this ambition, ASRIC is hosting high level Science and Innovation Symposium (the Forum of Africa Researchers in the Diaspora – FARID), in strategic partnership with Lancaster University UK, to develop Diaspora engagement strategies and action to ensure the mutual benefit of Africa and its Diaspora.

Participation Information

Guest Presentations

  • We seek guest presentations on strategies, experiences, opportunities and insights for collaboration with ASRIC from UK based African Researchers. If you are interested, please submit a short 200-word overview of your paper.
  • If you are an academic researcher, currently working in or interested in Africa’s research landscape even if you are not African, please feel free to register for the symposium.

Poster Presentations

  • If you are an African PhD Student or Post-Doctoral Student undertaking an STI research work of great relevance to Africa and the ASRIC mandate, please feel free to submit an abstract to present a Poster at the Symposium.

Important notes to all

  • All abstracts (whether for Guest or Poster Presentations) must have been submitted by the 20th of March 2023 to be eligible for shortlist and confirmation. All confirmed presenters will be informed by the 31st of March 2023.
  • Please make your own plans for travels and accommodation if you wish to participate in this symposium.
  • The symposium will provide teas, coffees and a lunch meal for all participants.
  • A participant target of 200 is planned for and so ensure to register early and book your place before it is closed.
  • For information and clarifications, email the Chair of the ASRIC Diaspora UK Chapter, Dr Akanimo Odon -
  • For help and advice on logistics and accommodation, send email to Chisom Ejileugha –


Dr Ahmed Hamdy,

Dr Joanna Newman MBE FRSA

Contact Details

Name Akanimo Odon (Chair of the ASRIC Diaspora UK Chapter)


Directions to Lancaster Environment Centre

Lancaster Environment Centre is situated on the Lancaster University, Bailrigg Campus. Access the reception from Library Avenue.