About the CAAB

We are a group of civil society organizations and global health advocates. We are committed to Good Participatory Practice: relevant stakeholders will be part of the design and conduct of the research that affects them. When doing so, ethical standards and scientific endpoints are better. This work reflects our pledge to human rights, social justice and health equity.

AVAC Fellow doing COVID awareness and distribution of hygiene packs to the community.

Currently, we are 138 people from Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Bangladesh, Botswana, Brasil, Canada, Cote d’Ivoire, France, Greece, India, Ireland, Israel, Kenya, Malawi, Morocco, Netherlands, Nigeria, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, and Zambia. If you are interested to become a CAAB member, please apply here.

We face an uncommon public health crisis. This demands innovative responses to community engagement. Given the diverse  content, issues, and advocacy actions, the CAAB works into three parallel areas:

  1. Training and information.
  2. Access and advocacy/ communication issues.
  3. Research progress.

You can access our Conduct code at the link. 

What we’re reading

COVID is on the Verge of Becoming a Poor-Country Disease

Two years of COVID-19 in Africa: lessons for the world

BMJ’s editorial on the need for increased research on public health and social measures to  fight COVID-19.

Public Citizen’s Roadmap to Making Enough Vaccine for The World in One Year.

The NYTimes on Why Developing Countries can Make mRNA Vaccines

About Moderna’s Deal to supply more vaccine in Politico

An article in the journal Global Public Health on COVAX and the rise of the ‘super public private partnership.


The structure, focus and functioning of the CAAB is based on the following key considerations:

Unique Circumstances

Civil society engagement for COVID looks different from other epidemics such as HIV and TB. R&D is moving at a rapid pace: innovative trial designs and research approaches are being implemented. The ethical balance of risks and benefits of research are new. We must look for the best way to integrate engagement in this situation. However, community engagement in the development and implementation of the protocols should be a priority.

Global Representation

The COVID pandemic has impacted everyone on the globe in different ways. The CAAB is representative of varied age groups, geographies, ethnicities and societal sectors. It intentionally includes people who face a higher risk of COVID, bears a greater proportion of its burden. Also, it may be targeted for research and may be less familiar with representing their communities.

The CAAB is an evolving structure and wants to ensure its diversity.

Existing Capacity

There are already strong global civil society engagement, activist mechanisms around research and competency to conduct research literacy and advocacy. There are advocates with years of research literacy and advocacy experience. The CAAB is built on the established strength and capacity of existing mechanisms and lessons learned from other diseases.  Its members will co-create their own spaces and structures to help the CAAB to pursue its objectives.

Speed and Innovation

Given the volume and speed of COVID research, the CAAB must innovate to ensure relevance and answer to this global challenge.

Global Access

It is essential to ensure access is considered from bench to bedside. This is in line with Global Principles and with contributions from other Access to Medicines (A2M) partners.

The CAAB builds on the experience of community advisory structures such as AfroCAB, Global TB CAB, World CAB, Coalition to Accelerate and Support Prevention Research (CASPR), ATAC, EATG/ECAB, NIH DAIDS Community Partners, and HIV Prevention Trial Design Academy.