Whorrod Scholar PhD student within the Department of Psychology, Emily Taylor, has received £1000 funding towards new research engagement from the organisation GrantCraft.

The funding, which will help Emily develop new public engagement strategies to strengthen her thesis, will enable her to facilitate meetings and joint projects with autistic charities and autistic people.

Her doctoral work is investigating the psychological strengths of autism and this collaboration will help reach new audiences with her findings. This comes off the back of a recent drive to encourage researchers to engage the perspectives of autistic people to direct research aims, inform study designs, and interpret the findings.

Emily explained: “This is a fantastic opportunity that will help to support public engagement events and begin to bridge the gap between autism researchers and autistic people. This is imperative to understand the experiences of autistic people, ensure their perspectives are represented in research, and aid the communication of our research findings.

“I would like to thank GrantCraft for awarding me this fund, which will considerably improve the quality of my doctoral research project.”

Emily’s supervisor from the Department of Psychology, Dr Punit Shah added: “This is an exciting grant that will help strengthen links with autism charities. In particular, there is increasing awareness of improving public engagement – not just in communicating results to adults with autism – but also in co-developing research ideas and designs with autistic adults.

“This fund will directly feed into this important endeavour. Well done to Emily for winning the UK wide competition for this fund – great achievement within 6 months of starting her PhD.”

Upon meeting Emily and Punit at the University of Bath to provide Emily with her award, GrantCraft expressed their enthusiasm for Emily’s bid: “We were really impressed with the quality of the application and the innovative way in which the grant money will be utilised. We hope that this funding will provide a platform upon which Emily and her research group can build and strengthen relationships with research participants and key stakeholders”.