We are excited to announce the launch of a new seed funding scheme. We are inviting applications for seed funding to support the development of ideas for future adult social care research projects that include autistic people.

To coincide with the launch of our three-year partnership with the National Institute of Health Research's (NIHR) annual Research for Social Care Competition, Autistica is inviting applications for seed funding. The seed funding offered must be used to help in the development of applications for the forthcoming NIHR Research for Social Care competition and must relate to a research project about social care for autistic adults.

Our 2016 James Lind Alliance Priority Setting Partnership identified the third-highest community priority was to identify evidence-based models providing social care to autistic adults and yet social care provided to autistic adults remains almost entirely unevidenced. This is unacceptable and must change.

Autistica have £20,000 held in reserve for this call and wish to make 2-4 awards.

We expect proposals to illustrate

  • How you will make use of a short period of time to develop further research within autism and social care
  • How you will build upon existing partnerships and evidence base to develop novel and cutting-edge methods of supporting positive outcomes and improvements within social care
  • How you understand the needs of those who use social care (autistic people and their families) and those who provide social care or care for others

How to apply and deadlines

Applicants should complete this application form and return it via email to our Research and Policy Officer, Sarah O’Brien: sarah.obrien@autistica.org.uk

Proposals are due no later than Friday 28th May 2021. All deadlines are at 11:59 PM local UK time. Autistica reserves the right to return without review any proposals found not to be in compliance with the policies, procedures and research priorities outlined in the call for proposals.

Please pay close attention to the guidance for applicants.


Please read our full guidance for applicants.

The grant must be hosted at a UK institution although international collaborations are permitted.

Eligibility must be demonstrated with a letter from your institution which you should submit with the application form.

This funding call is UK wide, however applications will be evaluated in line with suitability for NIHR Research for social care call funding as this fund is intended to support the development of applications for the NIHR Research for Social Care competition. Funding from NIHR is awarded to research, clinical and academic institutions in England.

NIHR's Research for Social Care will fund research which generates evidence to improve, expand and strengthen the way adult social care is delivered for users of care services, carers, and the public. Contracted institutions must be in England but can have partnerships with or sponsorship from institutions within the UK. Applications through Research for Social Care should demonstrate strong links to people with social care needs, to social care service users and carers, and to organisations which provide adult social care services.

To find out more about NIHR eligibility criteria please visit the NIHR website and the Research for Social care call page.

Our Grant Development Awards and NIHR Research for Social Care partnership is made possible by the generous support of CareTech Foundation.