Simon Baron-Cohen, Ph.D is a Professor in the Departments of Psychology and Psychiatry University of Cambridge and Fellow at Trinity College, Cambridge. He is Director of the Autism Research Centre in Cambridge. He is author of 5 books: Mindblindness, The Essential Difference, Prenatal Testosterone in Mind, Zero Degrees of Empathy, and The Pattern Seekers. He has edited scholarly anthologies including Understanding Other Minds. He has also written books for parents and teachers including Autism and Asperger Syndrome: The Facts. He is author of Mind Reading and The Transporters, digital educational resources to help children with autism learn emotion recognition, and both nominated for BAFTA awards.
He has published over 650 peer reviewed scientific articles, which have made contributions to many aspects of autism research, to typical cognitive sex differences, and synaesthesia research. Three influential theories he formulated were the ‘mindblindness’ theory of autism (1985), the ‘prenatal sex steroid’ theory of autism (1997), and the ‘empathizing-systemizing’ theory of typical sex differences (2002).
He created the first UK clinic for adults with suspected Asperger Syndrome (1999) that has helped over 1,000 patients to have their disability recognized. He gave a keynote address to the United Nations in New York on Autism Awareness Day 2017 on the topic of Autism and Human Rights.
He is a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, the British Academy, the Academy of Medical Sciences, and the American Psychological Association. He is Vice-President of the National Autistic Society, and was President of the International Society for Autism Research (INSAR, 2017-19). He was Chair of the NICE Guideline Development Group for Autism (Adults) and was Chair of the Psychology Section of the British Academy. He is co-editor in chief of the journal Molecular Autism and is a National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) Senior Investigator. He is the Principal Investigator of the Wellcome Trust funded award investigating the genetics of autism, in collaboration with the Sanger Centre.
He serves as Scientific Advisor, Trustee or Patron to several autism charities including the Autism Research Trust, the Cambridge Autism Centre of Excellence, and to the company Auticon, which only employs autistic people. He has taken part in many television documentaries, including the BBC’s Horizon, and Employable Me. He received a knighthood in the New Year’s Honours List 2021.