4. Uta Frith – exploring the mind
Dame Professor Uta Frith is a developmental psychologist. Her capacity to break down barriers began at school, where she attended the local boys’ school in Germany to pursue her interests in science and maths – the start of a long and illustrious career. Uta arrived in London in the 1960’s at a time of liberation and exploration, and her subsequent work at University College London changed the way both the scientific community and wider society view those with autism and dyslexia, leading to significant changes in education and health policy. Uta was the first scientist to really listen to those with autism and dyslexia and their families, and their input impacted the theories she chose to test in subsequent rigorous scientific experiments. Uta’s work has been published in every major journal and she is one of the most highly regarded scientists of the last 50 years.
As a woman in a field dominated by men when she commenced her career, she is also passionate about improving the lot of women in science, launching a network for female scientists in London several years ago and encouraging women as much as she can.
Uta’s warmth, humour and enthusiasm for her subject is tangible, so listen on!