Connecting and networking online


1st December 2020 

Following the postponement of the PARC conference and other face to face activity, we would like to encourage members of PARC, and those interested in attending PARC events, to comment or contact us with their areas of research or wider interest. We would like to put people in contact with others in a similar research and wider interest area. We are aware some people may already know each other, and this would support the aim of us connecting and networking online together. 

Our hope is these groups can meet, have discussions, encourage each other and possibly work together if the occasion arose (e.g. funding bids, research projects). Another possibility is for these groups to meet to discuss research in the form of a reading group. In the current climate, this is likely to be online, however in the future we hope to be able to convene these on a face to face basis.

We would like this to be as organic and natural as possible, so people can meet via the software or communicative means which is best for them. 

One of these groups that will be starting is a new Journal Club. This Journal Club will be hosted by the Tizard Centre and PARC in partnership, focusing on autism, participatory research and critical autism studies. This will take the form of a reading and discussion group. People who have attended PARC events in the past are welcome, as are people who have not attended before. Both academics and those not currently in academia are welcome. It will run for the first time on the 16th December 2020 at 4pm on Zoom. We hope to run it bimonthly. Further information will be posted about this first event soon. 

We hope we can bring people together who may not have met otherwise, and create communities which encourage their members, and develop creative and new ideas. 

Krysia Waldock and Damian Milton

16 thoughts on “Connecting and networking online

  1. Hi. When you say ‘comment’, does that mean down here? I’m a PhD student researching transition to post-16 education and training with young autistic people. The research becomes participatory. It begins with asking young people about what is important to them around the time of transition (rather than measuring them against arbitrarily-defined goals) and then they later group together (online) to decide on the most important messages from the research and decide what to do about it. I’d be very interested to connect and learn more from people.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi all,

    This is a great idea.

    My area of interest is autism and education. I’m hoping to host a Participatory Autism Symposium in March 2021 (online – more details to follow) to share the work of PhD and Master’s students’ current research.

    Always happy to work on any autism/education/communication projects.



  3. I would also be interested in connecting if this networking is open to followers from farther away – I’m in the United States. I am a cultural anthropologist and working to make my research more participatory. My current research interests lie primarily in the area of work/employment/occupation – what experiences do autistic people have seeking and working at different jobs, what makes for an inclusive and accessible work environment, and what is the meaning and value of work/employment/occupation. I would be very happy to meet new people, read together, and develop new ideas.
    Thank you,


  4. I’m Zoe, currently a Masters student at SHU (Autism).
    Current main areas of interest include:
    – Autistic females generally & specifically girls in (or out of) mainstream education.
    – The relationship between interoception/Alexithymia/SPD & trauma in autism.
    Happy to connect with anyone on shared interests/work.


  5. Hi
    I’m an EdD student researching school attendance difficulties in autistic students (mainstream schools) through participatory research and if it’s a separate category of school attendance difficulty. Should it be identified and approached differently to e.g. neurotypical school refusal / attendance difficulties?
    I’m also interested in research with autistic girls. I’d be very happy to connect with others on research or shared interests.


  6. This is wonderful. I’ve been looking for an opportunity to connect, learn, share my research interests and collaborate. Looking forward. I also live in the United States.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. This sounds like a great idea. I am an MSc student currently doing a masters thesis on how autistic young women find community through social media. I would love to learn more from others about their projects and learn more about autism research in general!


  8. My ADHD side means hop from passion to fascination rather than maintaining a specific interest, though I’m almost always focused on autism. My core interest has been in sensory processing and education for several years now. I support autistic students in higher education.


  9. Hello,

    Fantastic initiative. I’m a neurodivergent Phd student researching lived experiences of neurodivergent employees before and during the COVID-19 pandemic to inform future practice.
    I want my neurodivergent researcher voice to be visible in my thesis and so therefore I am considering participatory research.


    • Hi,
      My research interest is very similar – would you be interested in exchanging ideas? If so, you can email me at If not, that’s OK too – I’ll look forward to seeing your work when it is published as I am sure it will be very informative.


  10. Hi! Are further events being planned for 2021?

    I am an autistic first year PhD student exploring 1) how people choose to spend time alone in a sensory friendly space, and 2) whether being able to access this time and space helps to reduce feelings of anxiety. I am interested in connecting with others in similar fields.


  11. Damian Milton commented in his presentation about PARC that those of us who don’t quite fit the mould, the outsider researchers, can be of value. I’m an autistic psychotherapist who would be very interested in doing, or helping with, some research on autism in the therapy room from the point of view not necessarily of the autistic client (which is what it always seems to be about) but the autistic therapist. I would really welcome any ideas, steers, suggestions…whatever. I’ve written a couple of articles and done a podcast but I’d really like us to be more visible.


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