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Professor Sir Michael Rutter has received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the Autism Professionals Awards, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to research in autism. The National Autistic Society (NAS) event, sponsored by Axcis Education Recruitment, saw 13 awards handed out to individuals and teams doing innovative work in the field of autism and having a positive impact on people with autism and their families in the UK. Professor Sir Michael Rutter became the first UK Professor of Child Psychiatry at the Institute of Psychiatry from 1973-1998 and is now Professor of Developmental Psychopathology. He set up the MRC Child Psychiatry Research Unit and the MRC Social, Genetic & Developmental Psychiatry Centre. His research has included studies of school and family influences on children’s behaviour; autism; and the European and Romanian adoptee (ERA) studies on the effects of severe deprivation. He has a special interest in the interplay between genetic and psychosocial risk factors and in resilience. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society and a Founding Fellow of the Academia Europaea and the Academy of Medical Sciences. Professor Sir Rutter has received numerous international honours and has published around 500 scientific papers, and over 50 books.
Carol Povey, Director of The National Autistic Society’s Centre for Autism, said: 'This year’s awards were the biggest yet, with a record 217 nominations showing the range of amazing work going on across the UK to improve the lives of people on the autism spectrum and their families. All the finalists did remarkably well to stand out in this highly competitive field and should be commended. 'I’m always struck by the huge impact that knowledgeable and understanding individuals and services can have on autistic people and their families. This is true of each and every one of the award finalists and winners. I hope their achievements will inspire other professionals and services to improve their own autism practice.'
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