an annual event in Finland

by and for autistic people



Autistic initiative in advocacy and public discourse

Autistic Spectrum Finland, a national association run by autistic people, organises this annual event with a long history. The style, size and name of these events have changed over the years, but every year since 1998 autistic people in Finland have selected topics and speakers, and taken central roles in organising something that we want to be part of.
Participation is free of charge. You can participate online from any country. If you are in Helsinki, you have the option of attending in person.

Corona restrictions and safety

To comply with current restrictions, we are preparing to allow the following maximum numbers of participants to attend in person in Helsinki.

  • 75 in the Sirenius hall  (normally the capacity of the room is 200)
  • 25 in the Auditorium (capacity 80)
  • 15 in the Alli Trygg hall (capacity 30)
  • 25 in the Olohuone -rooms (capacity 55)
  • 10 at a time in ASY’s meeting space

These limits may change if meeting restrictions and recommendations change before the event.


Registration and enquiries

To register, fill in and submit the form at the end of this page by 12 September. 

All who register will be sent the links for online participation. If you register to attend at the venue, you can to switch to online participation whenever you wish.

If you have any questions, or if you do not receive email confirmation within two days or registering, please contact the event coordinator:

Accommodation near the venue

The nearest places to stay overnight are the hostel Cheapsleep Helsinki and the hotel Scandic Kallio. Scandic gives a 10% discount to Autwave participants who book their stay at least 14 days in advance. If you register to participate in Helsinki, we will send you the discount code in the confirmation email.

Programme for English speakers

For the full programme including presentations in Finnish, see the event web page in Finnish.

Times are in Eastern European Summer Time (EEST), GMT +3.

Saturday 18.9.



Social gathering and snacks

A relaxed evening gathering in a cozy living room style space to meet and get to know people, or just enjoy coffee, tea and light snacks.

Sunday 19.9.


In parallel with part of the Finnish programme


Damian Milton

Double Empathy (video lecture with Finnish subtitles)


Fabrizio Acanfora

In other words: The vocabulary of diversity (live online presentation)




Martijn Dekker

The history of the neurodiversity concept (live online presentation)




Lunch break


Open doors and coffee at the ASY premises

Fleminginkatu 25 D 46

Damian Milton

Damian Milton

Damian works part-time for the Tizard Centre, University of Kent as a Lecturer in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. Damian also teaches on the MA Education (Autism) programme at London South Bank University and has been a consultant for the Transform Autism Education (TAE) project and a number of projects for the Autism Education Trust (AET). Damian’s interest in autism began when his son was diagnosed in 2005 as autistic at the age of two. Damian was also diagnosed with Asperger’s in 2009 at the age of thirty-six. Damian’s primary focus is on increasing the meaningful participation of autistic people and people with learning disabilities in the research process and chairs the Participatory Autism Research Collective (PARC).

Fabrizio Acanfora

Fabrizio is a musician, educator, writer and advocate for autistic rights. He teaches inclusive music education at LUMSA University, and he is head of communication and external relations for Specialisterne in Italy. In 2019, Farizio published the autobiographical book Eccentrico, and in 2021, a book about the languge and vocabulary used to describe neurological diversity: 'In altre parole - dizionario minimo di diversitá [In other words - a small dictionary of diversity].

Martijn Dekker

Martijn is the Chair of the Board of Autscape Organisation, which runs an annual conference by and for autistic people in the UK, and a Board member of EUCAP, the European umbrella organisation for autistic people's organisations. Starting in the 1990s, Martijn ran the Independent Living mailing list, one of the first international mailing lists that made it possible for autistic people to start connecting with each other, developing autistic online communities and culture. In that role he had the opportunity to follow closely some of the discussions that led to development of the neurodiversity concept.
Currently Martijn works as an autism trainer. His long term interests include computer programming and languages.

Registration is closed.