Autism CRC Research Award recipient announced

29 Nov 2022

Professor Sandra Jones from Australian Catholic University today received Autism CRC’s Award for Achievement in Autism Spectrum Research in Inclusive Autism Research. Autism CRC’s Research Strategy Director, Professor Andrew Whitehouse, presented the award at the Australasian Society for Autism Research (ASfAR) conference in Geelong.

“This year, one nomination really stood out in the field of Inclusive Autism Research, and that was Professor Jones’ project, Autistics in Academia, which sought to understand why the growing number of autistic academics remain largely absent from the academic literature. And this is despite the evident synergies between autistic strengths and academic careers,” said Professor Whitehouse.

The longitudinal project was conducted across 12 months and involved 37 autistic academics. All members of the research team were autistic. The research methodology drew upon the lived experience of researchers across all stages of the project.

One reviewer commented, “…The project has respectfully leveraged existing networks and relationships with the Autistic community; moreover, the research outputs indicate a response to the needs and inputs of research participants. The sharing of findings with research participants represents best practices in co-production. The project methodology is high-quality and is consistent with expectations for longitudinal qualitative studies. Overall, a high-quality example of Autistic-led research.”

Each year Autism CRC holds Awards for Achievement in Autism Spectrum Research. The awards are open to all organisations and researchers undertaking quality research projects in the area of autism, regardless of affiliation with Autism CRC. In particular, they recognise achievements in inclusive research practice and the translation of autism research into practice, products, policy and programs that benefit the autistic and broader autism communities.

We congratulate Professor Sandra Jones and her team from Australian Catholic University.

Professor Sandra Jones holding an award, standing next to Professor Andrew Whitehouse