About my Talks

Michael Barton speaks in front of a large audience at the Autism Show in London.Michael with Professor Simon Baron-Cohen

I give talks to a wide range of audiences around the UK about what it's like to be on the autism spectrum. My talks encourage autistic people to focus on their strengths and help neurotypical people (those that aren't autistic) to understand them better and therefore accommodate them to a greater extent. I have high functioning autism and am "sitting on the fence" between the neurotypical and autistic worlds and thus can act as an interpreter between the two. I have spoken alongside world-renowned speakers at shows, conferences, schools, workshops, panels and seminars to professionals, teachers, support assistants, mainstream and special needs schools, parents as well as children and adults on the spectrum.

I focus on the positive aspects of autism from personal experience. My talks have always been very well received (see Comments and Feedback below) and I cover a wide range of topics, from strategies to help overcome difficulties I have faced to the world of employment and most of what's in between. I also talk about how I use many of my autistic traits to my advantage and I explore the notion that being "normal" isn't necessarily what we want to achieve.

I started speaking in 2010 and one of my first speeches was at the Burgess Autistic Trust conference on "Aspects of Communication" with speakers such as Phoebe Caldwell. I spoke about how people on the spectrum can be literal thinkers and how this impacts on daily life.

My most popular talks to date have been at the Autism Show at the ExCel in London, the NEC in Birmingham and at EventCity in Manchester. These talks have always gone exceptionally well with a large, captive audience and a queue of people keen to get their copies of my books signed!

Over the September/October 2014 period I embarked on my first UK tour. I gave 28 talks and generated a lot of very positive feedback which has educated many people in the process.

If you would like me to give a talk at your event, school, conference or group please get in touch.

Upcoming Talks

Despite the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) pandemic I am still offering remote talks via Zoom (or similar). Please get in touch to find out more.

What Career Live? and What University Live?, Olympia London

Friday 9th October, time TBC

Saturday 10th October, time TBC

This event is FREE and open to the public, please book tickets here

The Autism Show, London

Friday 4th December

Saturday 5th December

This event is open to the public with 20% off if you book in advance. Please book tickets here

The Autism Show, Birmingham

Friday 11th December

Saturday 12th December

This event is open to the public with 20% off if you book in advance. Please book tickets here

My next talk could be for you! Please contact me for more details and how to book.

Comments and Feedback

Hootsuite, November 2019

"We are all keen to make a meaningful difference where we can and Michael Barton absolutely did. The interest in this debate was off the charts and I think the whole office listened.

The most powerful part of this was Michael's focus on the vital importance of diverse thinking for teams and companies, as well as the focus on the positive attributes of individuals on the spectrum that seems to get overlooked far too much.

There is a vast pool of talent available and we simply need to do more."

Ed Woolley, Senior Director, Customer Success. Content taken from his LinkedIn post.

"Michael's talk was both thoughtful and insightful. He unpacked a subject in an approachable and tactical manner. I learned a great deal about Autism while better understanding his perspective. Top Man!!"

Daniel MacQueen, EMEA Implementation Specialist

"What I appreciated most about Michael's talk was how he managed to discuss such a vast array of problems that people with Autism face whilst answering the question of how we can be more accommodating and help."

Dominique Elsey, Enterprise Marketing Specialist

"Michael's talk was super engaging and informative - one of the best I've had the chance to join lately. But most of all, I appreciated the practical suggestions given to help us make our workplace more diverse and be generally more aware of how to make interactions easier with people with autism and get the best out of their superpowers!"

Geghani Abramian, Engagement Manager

The Autism Show, June 2019

"The best talk I've ever heard. It was just on the spot."

Parent of young man diagnosed at 18

"Fantastic talk that really explains from an Autistic perspective"

Autistic teacher

"Funny, refreshing and honest. Really enjoyed every minute of this talk"

24 year old with Asperger's

"Fantastic talk, really enjoyable and informative. Should be delivered to schools and colleges across the country and definitely for business owners."

D Wootton, Location Manager for adults with complex needs. Parent and grandparent of 3 autistic kids

Thinking Differently About Autism Conference, Cognitive Centre, May 2019

Listening to @MichaelBarton22 speak about #autism should be mandatory for everyone working with children and teenagers. A privilege to hear his presentation at today’s ‘Thinking Differently About Autism’ conference hosted by @cogcen

Great conference today - thanks @cogcen for organising. Fab opening by @MichaelBarton22

Comments taken from Twitter

The FANTASTIC @MichaelBarton22 kicks off our #autism conference and wows us all.

Wendy Cooper, Director, Cognitive Centre

MCCH Hub Talk, November 2018

"Absolutely amazing talk you did at the Hub this evening. You just get better and better ... Inspirational is one word to describe your ability to articulate autism positivity!!"

"Another inspirational and informative talk by @MichaelBarton22 helpful information in Q&A for parents, teachers and anyone with an interest in #autism"

Attendees from the seminar

HMC School Librarians' Conference, October 2018

"This was very interesting and I felt much better informed about the issues facing autistic people and also about the amazing things that they can achieve."

"I thought the session was excellent. It gave me a much needed insight into the world of the Autistic."

"Brilliant speaker - thoroughly informative and enjoyable."

Attendees from the conference

Certitude Seminar, September 2018

"It was wonderful to have you and your session was very popular."

“This seminar was good. Great to hear from someone with Autism.”

“More presentations like Michael's.”

“The seminar was perfect.”

Attendees from the seminar

The National Gallery SEND Conference, September 2018

"We had very positive feedback from delegates. Everyone appreciated the opportunity to get together to be both informed and inspired."

Caroline Smith, Programmer for Schools and Teachers, The National Gallery

"Wow!! What an amazing and insightful day @NationalGallery I'm feeling inspired!!"

"Fascinating and entertaining insight into autistic thinking by @MichaelBarton22 at @NationalGallery"

"Inspiring talk on autism from author Michael Barton"

Comments taken from Twitter

Cork Autism Conference, September 2017

"Thank you so much for your very inspiring, informative and thought-provoking presentation ... I know many received insights and tools which they can use to support and empower adults and children with autism and ASD."

Michéal O'Mathuna, CEO & founder, The Health Zone

More reviews available from the Cork Autism Conference 2017 on Facebook

Dennis Genius Week, Dennis Publishing Ltd, June 2016

"An amazing talk by Michael Barton, thank you so much! Hope everyone enjoyed it as much as I did!"

Sinead Waugh, Digital Sales Administrator, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

"That was an awesome session!"

Amrit Gill, Client Services Manager, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

The Autism Show 2016, The NEC, Birmingham

"We travelled from Lowestoft for the show and it was worth it just to hear you speak!"


Dennis Publishing Ltd. Charity Introduction Morning, April 2016

"Hugely inspiring talk by @MichaelBarton22 a colleague at @DennisUK talking abt life with high functioning autism" Paul Hood (@PaulHood), Head of Digital of the Technology Division, Dennis Publishing Ltd.

University of the 3rd Age (U3A) Meeting, January 2016

"That was the best talk I've ever heard! I didn't want him to stop!"

U3A Member (retired nurse)

"A fantastic talk! Informative, amusing and very moving in places."

U3A Member (great-grandparent of 3-year old autistic boy)

National Autistic Society AGM 2015

"Fabulous presentation from Michael at our AGM today"

Carol Povey, Director of the NAS Centre for Autism, National Autistic Society

Protocol Education Annual Conference 2015

"We have had many guest speakers over the years at our Company Conferences, but no one has entertained and informed in equal measure and to such a high degree as you did."

Scott Owen, Marketing Manager, Protocol Education Ltd.