Our vision and strategy

Professor Richard Gilbertson

Professor Richard Gilbertson, Director of the CRUK Cambridge Centre

Our vision is to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.

The mission of the CRUK Cambridge Centre is to end death and disease caused by cancer through research, treatment and education.

More than 1200 laboratory researchers and physicians are pursuing this mission and are united through our ten research programmes, three virtual institutes and four affiliated physical institutes (see our Research pages here).

Our research is closely aligned to Cancer Research UK's research strategy with a focus on earlier detection of cancer and the most difficult-to-treat cancers, including lung, pancreatic, oesophageal, ovarian and childhood cancer, as well as brain tumours.

Our strategic objectives are:

1. Conduct impactful interdisciplinary cancer research – we will leverage Cambridge innovation to better understand, prevent, detect, diagnose and treat cancer. By engaging multidisciplinary teams across the CRUK Cambridge Centre and beyond we will implement CRUK’s strategic approaches to build understanding of cancer and tackling cancers with substantial unmet need.

2. Adopt a proactive approach to cancer – we will change the way we treat cancer from a reactive system that waits for cancer to present, to a proactive, personalised strategy that detects cancer in its earliest form, intervenes precisely, and monitors the disease with minimally-invasive technologies. By implementing CRUK’s strategic approaches we aim to facilitate a major shift in early diagnosis research, accelerate the translation of research and help to realise the NHS Long Term Plan for Cancer to enable 55,000 more people/year to survive >5 years beyond a diagnosis of cancer.

3. Develop the cancer leaders of tomorrow – we will develop new cancer leaders, trained in fundamental research, early detection and precision cancer medicine, producing a step change in the way cancer is treated by future generations.

4. Partner with patients and the public – we will communicate the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of preventing, detecting and treating cancer early and precisely, engaging and involving patients and the public in our research.

One of the main principles of the CRUK Cambridge Centre is the open exchange of scientific knowledge and skills across the many disciplines involved in cancer science, creating a culture of continuous learning and development for all members.

In keeping with this aim, the Centre also supports a broad programme of formal education and training designed to nurture the next generation of cancer researchers and clinicians.

Cancer Research UK is investing £100 million over five years (2022 – 2027) into seven Cancer Research UK Centres across the UK. The Centres in the new network will be Cambridge, City of London, Convergence Science, Manchester, Newcastle, Oxford and Scotland.

Our strategic plan, below, explains our structure, aims and achievements from 2017 – 2022.

Download our CRUK Cambridge Centre Structure and Strategy Beyond 2019

Download CRUK Cambridge Centre Structure and Strategy Beyond 2019 (7.2 MB file)