Historically psychological research has been done without the active involvement of people who the research influences. Dyslexic people did not take part in research on dyslexia, and autistic people did not take part in research which could potentially affect their lives, but this is starting to change.
This is especially evident in research concerning dyslexia. More and more studies that study learning difficulties are now directed by people who have learning difficulties. The same thing happens with autism.
This could have both positive and negative consequences. One of the positive consequences of it would be, that the research would actually be connected by people who have first hand experience with the disorder, and there before understand it on a much deeper level, than someone who just knows about autism or dyslexia from books. This is extremely beneficial as both disorders seem to have different patterns of experience. Autistic people often have different sensory experiences, when compared to “normal” people. They are often highly sensitive to touch, and certain sounds can be actually experienced by them as painful. If someone who knows the condition at a defect level is involved in research, this may lead to a more accurate analysis of it, and in turn better results.
Then again, we have to take into consideration, that there is no such thing as objective research. Every psychologist comes “with” his own believes, morals and values, and one of the beliefs of people in the autistic community is that autism is not a disorder, but just a different way of thinking, that should be accepted, not modified to fit the norm. They do not have to change themselves for the world, but the world should change to accommodate them.
How could this be problematic? Well let's say that a study would slowly suggest that people with autism would be more predisposed to something classified as “bad”. Let's say, for the sake of argument, “aggression”, if the study would be directed by someone with autism, he might purposely lead the research in a direction which would omit the finding. Additionally, the fact is that people with an autism spectrum disorder differ in their experiences. The experiences of one person with autism might be significantly significant, when compared to the experiences of another person with an autism spectrum disorder. This happens because autism is not a “present or not” disorder. One can be more-or less autistic, and in modern times individuals that are strictly on the autism spectrum are now the exception and not the rule. Most of those with autism have it mildly or lightly and vary importantly in their experiences, so it might be that if someone with autism would lead an experiment he would treat his own experiences with autism as archetypical and there before applying to all people with an autistic spectrum disorder.
Of course, this is only speculation, and the potential positives of including people with autism in research influencing their lives seem to outweigh the potential negatives, it would allow us to integrate both the “inside” knowledge of autism with the objectivity of scientific research, without sacrificing neither. As someone with autism could naturally infuse his first hand knowledge onto the dry objectivity or scientific research.