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Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CAEL)

Hear about how the Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership at the University of Wolverhampton uses Training, Research and Innovation to support Educational Institutions, Groups and Governments to build capacities and human capital for sustainable socio-economic development in Africa.

The Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CAEL) coordinates capacity building activities that focus on entrepreneurship and leadership, and provides opportunity for evidenced-based research and policy for Africa.

CAEL serves the wider African communities in a programme of Africa-based entrepreneurship, connecting groups and institutions with Faculties and business support units within the University for the purpose of developing sustainable schemes for SMEs growth, graduate and youth employment and women empowerment.

We have extensive experience of leading multi-agency partnerships and working with groups, higher institutions, governments, parastatals, and donor agencies to address socio-economic disparities through knowledge transfer.

The centre was formally launched on 30 November 2015 with dignitaries, government officials and project partners across the African continent in attendance. View our gallery of photos from the launch.

In September 2017, the University of Wolverhampton secured funding of £1.3million to support the education of entrepreneurs in Africa. The innovative project, delivered with seven partners in Africa, will be funded by the European Union. The University’s Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CAEL) will lead the €1.4m project which will focus on strengthening communities by enhancing awareness of self-employment opportunities.

You can read a testimonial from one of our training participants, Christiana Wakawa, on how our entrepreneurship training has impacted her life in Maiduguri, Bono State, Nigeria.

You can also download our project reports.

Download the CAEL Brochure


By working in partnerships with groups and institutions in Africa, such as, Bayero University Kano (BUK), Bauchi State Ministry for Rural Development (BSMRD), National Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), Niger Delta University (NDU), and University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID), we have been able to:

  • Develop groundbreaking entrepreneurship schemes to support youth and graduate employment.
  • Embed entrepreneurship education.
  • Establish entrepreneurship centres.
  • Devise good governance templates for governments. 

Altogether, these interventions have enhanced institutional capabilities and transformed communities in the Continent. With access to leading-edge technology and world-class educational facilities, all our programmes are adaptable and can be delivered in-country or in the UK to suit our partners’ specific needs and changing circumstances. 

If you are interested in working with us towards the following benefits:  

  • To deploy, adapt, strengthen and maintain your capabilities.
  • To define, plan and realise your own development objectives.
  • To encourage inclusivity, participation and sustainability.
  • To adopt global best practices in entrepreneurship and good governance. 

Please contact or call +44 1902321175.

The Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CAEL) was conceived in 2013.  Its two main aims are: 1) to support African institutions, governments and parastatals seeking to build capacity for the development of sustainable entrepreneurship education and good governance schemes, and 2) to coordinate cross-faculty activities relating to research and development of impact studies for policy in this area. CAEL’s establishment was framed around the University’s strategic response in 2011 to the significant need to develop the institutional capability in Africa.  This focused  on the area of entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurship centres as part of a wider strategy by various African governments to deal with the issue of graduate unemployment.

In 2012, the University of Wolverhampton Business School (UWBS) through the path-breaking vision of Dr. Paschal Anosike, a Nigerian and a senior academic within the School, successfully designed and hosted the first ever knowledge transfer workshop focused on establishing entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurship centres in tertiary institutions in Africa. The workshop, attended by prominent scholars, politicians and policy makers from Africa, was the catalyst for new partnerships with a number of African institutions including Bayero University Kano (BUK) and the University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) both in Northern Nigeria. 

By 2013, our partnerships with various Nigerian institutions had grown and deepened leading to UWBS bringing together expertise across the University, e.g. the Wolverhampton Business Solutions Centre (WBSC), to develop successful models for embedding entrepreneurship education and operationalising entrepreneurship centres for the Nigerian higher education sector.

In the same year, underpinned by strong leadership from the then UWBS Dean, Dr. Anthea Gregory (who is now the Deputy Vice Chancellor - Academic), UWBS launched its MSc Innovation and Entrepreneurship degree course and also began the formal consultation process that led to the investment bid to establish an African Centre. The idea was to replicate the successes so far achieved by UWBS in the area of knowledge transfer partnerships (KTP) by providing a pan-African platform within the University for African scholars, governments and policy makers.  The idea was to create an opportunity to generate and share knowledge and pedagogy, and disseminate best practices on entrepreneurship and good governance for the benefit of groups and communities within Africa.

By 2014, the University had received a number of UK national awards as a direct result of our interventions in Nigeria. These include The Guardian University Awards for Best International Project, PraxisUnico Impact Awards for The Best Collaborative Impact Award, in addition to being shortlisted for the Times Higher Education Impact Awards. These were highpoints in our collaborative commitment towards building a solid entrepreneurship capability not just in Nigeria but also across Africa where similar opportunities exist.

In a significant endorsement of this commitment, the Vice Chancellor Professor Geoff Layer announced in January 2014, during a partnership event in Nigeria, that the University has formally approved the establishment of the Centre for African Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CAEL). True to our strong focus on Africa, CAEL uses all its resources through capacity building, research, policy and innovation to provide tailor-made programmes that support African scholars, institutions, and governments committed to developing entrepreneurship education, entrepreneurship centers of excellence and promoting SMEs growth as means to transform African communities.

Individuals from various professional and academic backgrounds within the University and from across our global networks support CAEL’s mission in Africa. They include established academics, researchers, and practitioners in disciplines and careers that span entrepreneurship, leadership, corporate social responsibility and governance.

These individuals contribute to our work and initiatives both in the UK and in Africa in various capacities by working closely with our partners either as programme presenters, project consultants, research supervisors or provide logistics and administrative support to our partners during their visit and throughout their stay in the UK.

Some of our people live and work in Africa and embrace our long-standing commitment to developing solutions aimed at addressing issues of socio-economic disparity and leadership challenges faced by our partners in Africa.

Read a testimonial from Christiana Wakawa, explaining how accessing training organised by Wolverhampton University at the University of Maiduguri made a huge difference to her life.

  • We design and deliver bespoke short courses and training in entrepreneurship and leadership and produce impact studies for policy in Africa.
  • We develop and accredit curricula on entrepreneurship, management and leadership and support the establishment of entrepreneurship centres.
  • We promote academic partnerships with higher institutions in Africa, foster PhD level research and undertake research and consultancy in all aspects of entrepreneurship, management and leadership. 
  • We promote the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) by creating conditions for gainful employment, women empowerment and community development in Africa.