Autistica is doing research that will transform our understanding of autism and help autistic people like my daughter have a better quality of life.

Gill Ackers, Mum


Autistic people and their families should be able to live a long, healthy, happy life. 

Our research strategy presents a plan for achieving this vision and transforming the unacceptable outcomes faced by autistic people through world-class research.

Our role

At Autistica, our funding schemes are designed to get new trials, research areas and careers started. 

We also see research through to the end by providing a research environment in the UK that means research can make a lasting difference.  

Our objectives

Alongside finding new ways to improve the lives of every autistic person, we have set ambitious goals over the next three years to make our vision a reality. We will

  • increase the UK’s autism research spend from £4 million to £12 million a year
  • get 20,000 autistic people and family members involved in research
  • nurture at least 5 new independent leaders within autism research  

Our approach

Mental health and suicide

Over 70% of autistic people have had a mental health problems.  We’re learning why this is the case and we’re finding treatments that work for autistic people.

Physical health

Autistic people face poorer physical health and tragically have a lower life expectancy.  We investing in this under-researched area and investigating the feasibility of initiatives such as health checks.

Language and communication

For an autistic five-year-old one of the best predictors of their life chances is their language and communication ability.  We will support new innovative tools and trials to help support autistic people and their family members.

Epilepsy and autism

The leading cause of early death for autistic people with intellectual disability is epilepsy.  We know that epilepsy is far more common in autistic people.  We plan to hold a strategic meeting with other funders and make targeted investments in new studies which could better control seizures in autistic people.  

Download our strategy

We're transforming the unacceptable outcomes faced by autistic people through world-class research. 

Read our full research strategy.