David’s main areas of research interest include the impact of autism and disability upon the family; consultation with children and young people with disabilities; and intervention approaches in autism and disability.
David is Principal Investigator on a three-year Erasmus+ project (2015-18) funded by the European Commission: Equity and Social Inclusion through Positive Parenting – ESIPP (www.esipp.eu). This €430K project is focused on developing and evaluating parent education in autism in the Balkans and south-east Europe, and includes partners from universities, NGOs and parent organisations in Croatia, Cyprus, the Republic of Macedonia, Belgium and the UK.
He is also working with his colleague Dr Prithvi Perepa developing and adapting training in autism for social workers in conjunction with the Autism Education Trust.
Previous funded research projects that David has led at the University include a 12-month project (2015-16) investigating the reintegration of students with autism and severe anxiety into educational settings, and an investigation into the use of multi-sensory storytelling with pupils with special educational needs (2013-14).
He has also worked as a joint researcher on a number of funded University Projects. These have included research into knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding childhood disability in Bhutan (2015-17), a situation analysis regarding inclusive education for children with autism in Oman (2015-16); and an investigation of the impact of participation in a university-led award scheme on pupil involvement in decision-making in schools (2015-17).
David has undertaken and published research using both qualitative and quantitative methods. He currently supervises a number of postgraduate students, researching into autism (in UK, Indian, African and European contexts), profound and multiple learning difficulties and the experience of minority and disadvantaged groups.