The PAU shall undertake training, research and innovation focused on priority issues in order to attain the following objectives:
- develop continent-wide and world-class graduate study programmes in science, technology, innovation, humanities, social sciences and governance;
- stimulate collaborative, internationally competitive, cutting-edge fundamental and applied research, in areas having a direct bearing on the scientific, technological, economic and social development of Africa;
- enhance the mobility of students and academic staff among African universities to improve on training, research and innovation;
- contribute to the capacity building needs of present and future stakeholders of the African Union;
- improve on the attractiveness of African higher education and research institutions to attract and retain talented young professionals on the African continent;
- initiate and invigorate mutually beneficial partnerships with public and private sectors within Africa and the Diaspora as well as internationally; and
- facilitate the emergence and strengthening of an African higher education and research platform.