About Us

Specialisterne Foundation is a not-for-profit foundation with the goal to generate meaningful employment for one million autistic persons and those with similar profiles (ADHD, OCD, dyslexia etc.) – in combination referred to as neurodivergent persons – through social entrepreneurship, corporate sector engagement and a global change in mindset. 

Specialisterne Foundation is associated with the United Nations Department of Global Communications and is committed to promote the United Nations’ ‘Call to Action‘ for employers to hire autistic persons. We collaborate with a range of stakeholders and demonstrate how the inclusion of neurodivergent talent can improve workplaces and contribute to improved quality of life. Through acting as a catalyst and supporting employees globally, we contribute to the implementation of Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 8 – Decent work and economic growth. 

Since 2004, we have proven ‘The Autism Advantage’ and catalysed a global movement which so far has resulted in the employment of more than 10.000 autistic persons in competitive jobs across a number of business sectors.

The founder, Thorkil Sonne, is a World Economic Forum Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur and  Ashoka Globalizer Fellow.

Specialisterne Foundation is based on the dandelion principle.
A dandelion is only a weed in an environment where it is not welcomed. If the plant is transferred to an environment where it is welcomed, valued and nurtured – it turns into an herb with numerous medicinal and nutritional values. Autistic persons often struggle to feel welcome in the labor market despite having much sought after skills such as attention to detail, loyalty or an outstanding memory to name a few. Specialisterne chapters around the world strive to create an environment where each individual can thrive in workplace and provide support both for the individual and the employer to maintain this comfort zone. Read more about the regional projects and initiatives on Specialisterne local websites.

Specialisterne Foundation is based on the dandelion principle.

A dandelion is only a weed in an environment where it is not welcomed. If the plant is transferred to an environment where it is welcomed, valued and nurtured – it turns into an herb with numerous medicinal and nutritional values. Autistic persons often struggle to feel welcome in the labor market despite having much sought after skills such as attention to detail, loyalty or an outstanding memory to name a few. Specialisterne chapters around the world strive to create an environment where each individual can thrive in workplace and provide support both for the individual and the employer to maintain this comfort zone. Read more about the regional projects and initiatives on Specialisterne local websites.

Mission

Specialisterne Foundation works to enable jobs for neurodivergent persons through social entrepreneurship, innovative employment models, and a global change in mindset by sharing best practice, disseminating knowledge and co-creating local adapations 

Vision

A world where all people are given equal opportunities on the labour market

Values

Our four core values, Respect, Accommodation, Clarity and Accessibility, guide our efforts to enable inclusive environments where everyone can excel and grow. 

Respect: 

Respect is understanding and acknowledging that all persons are different and that all contributions are based on individual motivation, work ability and skills. 

Respect is to recognise and appreciate that we all have feelings, ambitions and rights to contribute to the labour market and community. 

Respect is not to assume but to understand others’ perspectives. 

Respect is to leave no one behind by providing opportunities for all.

 

Accommodation:

Accommodation is to put people in places where they can excel.

Accommodation is an evolving relationship between the person and cultural, physical and virtual barriers that hinders full participation on an equal basis with others. 

Accommodation is to provide reasonable adjustments.

Accommodation is to develop a comfort zone for the person and jointly with managers and coworkers.

 

Clarity:

Clarity is about setting and communicating mutual expectations in ways that everyone understands. 

Clarity will allow everyone to thrive despite having different communication styles.

Clarity is to say what you mean and mean what you say. 

Clarity through structure and transparency are essential for everyone to excel in diverse work environments. 

 

Accessibility:

Accessibility is having the option of personal and professional guidance and directions from managers and coworkers as needed and when needed.