Research briefings

This page provides access to research briefings produced by the House of Commons Library, the House of Lords Library and the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST). You can filter the research briefings by date, type, or one of 350 topics. Pick your options from the dropdown menus.

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    Glossary

    • Commons Briefing papers: Papers providing in-depth and impartial analysis on every major piece of primary legislation and on other topics of public and parliamentary concern. Regular statistics papers are also published.
    • Lords Library Notes: Authored publications by the research section of the House of Lords Library that provide analysis of Bills, subjects for debate in the House and other issues of interest to Members.
    • POSTbriefs: Responsive policy briefings from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology based on mini-literature reviews and peer review, typically commissioned by select committees and library research services.
    • POSTnotes: Proactive four-page policy briefings from the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology based on reviews of the research literature, interviews with stakeholders and peer review, commissioned by the POST Board.
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    Topics

    Topics: Research material can be filtered by subject using the topic terms. The topics are arranged in a taxonomy (a hierarchical classification) and can be further filtered using sub-topics.

Displaying 21-40 out of 563

The Water-Energy-Food Nexus
Published Friday, December 9, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0543
The term nexus describes the key interactions between parts of a system or systems. This POSTnote summarises current understanding of the interactions between water, energy and food production and examines how nexus approaches can be used to inform policy decisions.
Natural Capital: An Overview
Published Wednesday, December 7, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0542
The benefits derived from natural resources include food, recreation and clean air and water. The aim of valuing these resources is to quantify better the cost of their degradation. This POSTnote summarises how to value natural capital, discusses the advantages and challenges of approaches and describes some initiatives to secure natural capital for the future.
Genome Editing
Published Wednesday, November 23, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0541
This POSTnote covers current and future uses of genome editing, how it is regulated and the potential concerns it raises.
Nuclear Security
Published Tuesday, October 25, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0540
In 2016, the US President stated that the danger of a terrorist group obtaining and using a nuclear weapon was “one of the greatest threats to global security”. This briefing provides an overview of the key threats to nuclear security, and of UK and international initiatives that seek to address them.
Creating age-friendly cities
Published Tuesday, October 18, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0539
This POSTnote examines how housing, outdoor spaces and transport can be made more age-friendly. It also highlights challenges for designing and delivering age-friendly cities.
Green Space and Health
Published Monday, October 17, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0538
A range of bodies, including Government agencies, have promoted the possible physical and mental health benefits of access to green space. This POSTnote summarises the evidence for physical and mental health benefits from contact with nature, such as reducing rates of non-communicable diseases, and the challenges for urban green spaces.
Rewilding and Ecosystem Services
Published Thursday, September 29, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0537
This POSTnote explores the consequences of increasing the role of natural processes within landscapes. Evidence from the UK and abroad suggests that rewilding can benefit both wildlife and local people, but animal reintroductions could adversely affect some land-users.
Designing a Circular Economy
Published Monday, September 26, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0536
Circular economies recover resources at their highest quality and keep them in circulation for longer. Shifting to this model could alleviate concerns arising from current approaches to material use, such as resource insecurity and pollution. This POSTnote outlines what a circular economy could look like and summarises some of the benefits of, and challenges to, creating one.
Managing the UK Plutonium Stockpile
Published Thursday, September 1, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0531
This POSTnote describes the state of the plutonium stockpile, current plutonium policy and the options for managing the plutonium: indefinite storage, reuse in UK power plants, conversion to fuel to send overseas and disposal as waste. It then outlines the safety, security, economic and energy policy implications of these options.
New Drugs for Dementia
Published Tuesday, August 16, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0535
A POSTnote outlining the challenges in developing new drugs to treat dementia, and an overview of UK and international research activities to accelerate progress.
Automation and the Workforce
Published Friday, August 12, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0534
Automation technologies can reduce costs and raise productivity. However, there is considerable uncertainty over their potential effects on the UK workforce. This note provides an overview of how these technologies are being used; and potential implications for employment, skills, education and inequality in the coming decades.
Electronic Cigarettes
Published Tuesday, August 9, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0533
This POSTnote updates POSTnote 455 (January 2014), summarising the latest data on scale of use, safety and quality of electronic cigarettes, and their value as a stop smoking tool. It also explores the implications of the new EU Tobacco Products Directive and regulatory approaches in the UK.
Integrating Health and Social Care
Published Tuesday, August 2, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0532
An ageing population and the increasing prevalence of long-term conditions are putting pressure on health and social care services. The four UK nations have committed to better integration between health and social care as one solution to these challenges. This briefing outlines what integration is, examines policies to enable it and gives examples of integration in England. It also looks at the evidence on the challenges of achieving integration and assessing the effectiveness of approaches.
Sugar and Public Health
Published Monday, June 20, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0530
This POSTnote summarises the health risks associated with eating a diet high in sugar and outlines the policy options that might best enable people to limit their sugar consumption.
Adapting Urban Areas to Flooding
Published Friday, June 17, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0529
Most properties, businesses and related infrastructure at risk of flooding are in urban areas, where more than 80% of the UK population live. This note summarises how urban areas can be better managed to adapt to flood risk from rivers, surface water, sewers and ground water.

Topics: Flooding, Planning

Marine Microplastic Pollution
Published Sunday, June 5, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0528
Plastic pollution is accumulating rapidly in the world’s oceans. The potential effects of microplastics on the environment and human health are an area of active research. This POSTnote summarises their sources and spread, the evidence that they present a risk and possible strategies to reduce plastic pollution.
Infant Mortality and Stillbirth in the UK
Published Friday, May 27, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0527
A POSTnote which reviews recent data on stillbirth and infant mortality rates in the UK and examines the factors contributing to increased risk. It then looks at the policy options that may help to improve health outcomes for infants and their families.
Addressing Islamic Extremism
Published Wednesday, May 25, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0526
In the UK, groups that hold extreme views have included nationalists, the far right, and more recently Islamic extremists. Government policy has mainly focused on the latter although the Counter-Extremism and Safeguarding Bill, announced in the Queen's Speech and due to be introduced this year, covers most types. This POSTnote looks at Islamic extremism, radicalisation and deradicalisation, and the policy responses to violent and non-violent extremism.
Financial Technology (FinTech)
Published Tuesday, May 24, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0525
Financial Technology (FinTech) describes the application of digital technology to financial services. This POSTnote reviews how and why FinTech is being used, and the benefits and challenges it presents to the UK.
Education in Youth Custody
Published Tuesday, May 17, 2016 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0524
Recent government policy emphasises putting education at the heart of youth custody. A review of the youth justice system is due to be published in summer 2016. This POSTnote looks at the literature on the provision and quality of education in youth custody in England and Wales. And it examines the challenges in providing education to a population with particular needs.

Displaying 21-40 out of 563

About libraries

House of Commons Library

The House of Commons Library provides research, analysis and information services for MPs and their staff.

House of Lords Library

The House of Lords Library delivers research and information services to Members and staff of the House in support of parliamentary business.

POST

The Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology produces independent, balanced and accessible briefings on public policy issues related to science and technology.

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