Autistica’s Discover Network

Research is slow. Research is expensive. And there’s no guarantee that it will produce anything useful. But it’s the only long-term potential solution to certain problems. Autistica’s Discover is a virtual online network is designed for the true experts in autism: those on the autistic spectrum themselves and their families and carers.

It is the first national network for interested parties to learn about the latest findings and to help shape or take part in research studies and surveys. Non-profit organisations such as care providers and special schools are also included; this volunteer group of those directly involved with autism has a target of 20,000 members by 2021.

Research is not necessarily in a laboratory. Autistica could be trawling for people to get involved in a survey or advisory group. Or trialling a new therapy or – in this digital age – a new app. Members can opt not to get directly involved but register to only receive updates on the results of the latest research.

Research is not necessarily in a laboratory. Autistica could be trawling for people to get involved in a survey or advisory group. Or trialling a new therapy or – in this digital age – a new app. Members can opt not to get directly involved but register to only receive updates on the results of the latest research.

Nine in 10 want to take part in research whereas they haven’t previously known where to start. Autistica’s Discover network links them with research centres which might email out a request such as

Wanted
people aged 35 – 45,
diagnosed as being autistic before the age of 30,
for language study.
UK-wide.
Contact:…

Everything will have been approved by an independent ethics committee. All projects are focussed on the top priorities which came out of an earlier Autistica study: mental health, language and communication and physical health.

Discover aims to support autistic people, their families and the whole community: with information about research; how to get involved; to co-ordinate initiatives and promote collaborative working; and bring researchers together to develop national strategies.

Given leadership, post-Brexit UK can become a world leader in autism research.

Dame Stephanie Shirley

Dame Stephanie Shirley

Dame Stephanie “Steve” Shirley CH is a philanthropist. She arrived in Britain as a five-year-old on the Kinderstransport in 1939. In 1962, she founded a software company, F. I. Group PLC. Early in her career she found it advantageous to go by the name “Steve” in a male-dominated business world and she employed only women until the 1975 Sex Discrimination Act made it illegal to do so.
She retired in 1993 to concentrate on philanthropic work, since then she has given away at least £68 million of the estimated £150 million wealth she built after selling her IT firm. She continues to give to a range of causes including autism research.
Dame Stephanie Shirley

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Chris Exley
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Chris Exley

It is a great shame that Stephanie Shirley’s Autistica charity refuses to even recognise any value in our research in this field (https://www.hippocraticpost.com/mental-health/aluminium-and-autism-what-next/). How does such a blinkered attitude serve those with autism?