BIPOC adults on the autism spectrum deserve to have an active role in shaping research to mitigate health issues and promote well-being. Our prior PCORI engagement award on transition-age autistic youth revealed to us that it is now imperative to focus on BIPOC autistic adults. In the long term, we hope that preparing a group of BIPOC autistic adults to partner with researchers and creating a toolkit to help researchers partner with autistic adults as expert advisors, will catalyze the design and implementation of PCOR/CER studies to prevent or reduce health problems and improve well-being for autistic adults.

We propose to enhance the capacity of 10 BIPOC autistic adults to partner with researchers–and of researchers to engage with BIPOC autistic adults–throughout the PCOR/CER process. Our board of BIPOC autistic adults from across the U.S., will receive in-depth training during our 12 Zoom meetings on engaging in research as consultants. Through this project, we will also create a toolkit for researchers that explains how to make their work accessible to BIPOC autistic adults who wish to engage as expert partners. At the project’s conclusion, we will have BIPOC autistic adults prepared as partners, and a roadmap for researchers to form equitable partnerships.

For this project, Dr. Magaña will serve as a Co-Investigator by working collaboratively with Co-PIs Drs. Meghan Bair-Merritt (Bostin Medical Center) and Emily Rothman (Boston University) to prepare for Advisory Board meetings. She will attend and help facilitate 12 meetings with Advisory Board members. Dr. Magaña will also help to create the toolkit based on results of the meetings and will contribute to manuscript preparation