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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    • 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: 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 85

Cyber Security of UK Infrastructure
Published Tuesday, May 2, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0554
The Government has identified ‘cyber’ as one of six Tier 1 threats to UK national security. This POSTnote focuses on the cyber security of the UK’s critical national infrastructure, describing measures to improve cyber security and challenges in implementing them. It also reviews the new National Cyber Security Strategy, along with international policy and legislation.
EU Agencies and post-Brexit options
Published Friday, April 28, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7957
What are EU agencies and what do they do? Will the UK be able to participate in their activities after Brexit? And what will happen to the two that are based in the UK? This paper looks at the roles and functions of EU agencies, the issues surrounding the two UK-based agencies, and whether there are options for continued UK participation after Brexit.
Quantum Technologies
Published Monday, April 24, 2017 | POSTnotes POST-PN-0552
Quantum Technologies use the behaviour of matter and light that is normally only observed at very small scales. This POSTnote introduces recent advances, applications, and UK initiatives to support their development and commercialisation. It also reviews policy concerns such as privacy, access to new technologies and secure communications.
Vehicle Technology and Aviation Bill 2016-17
Published Thursday, March 2, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7872
This paper explains the policy background to and contents and purpose of the Vehicle Technology and Aviation Bill 2016-17 (HC Bill 143). The Bill was introduced in the House of Commons on 22 February 2017. It is scheduled to receive Second Reading on 6 March.
Nuisance from helicopters and light aircraft
Published Wednesday, February 22, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers SN04059
This short paper summarises the law in respect of helicopter and light aircraft noise; safety when flying low over built up areas; permitted development for landing sites and routes of complaint if an aircraft breaches those rules.

Topic: Aviation

Aviation noise
Published Monday, February 13, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers SN00261
This paper briefly looks at the impacts of aviation noise on those who live underneath flight paths and close to airports and explains the various measures put forward to tackle noise pollution, including flight restrictions and charges; better airspace design, and quieter aircraft.

Topics: Aviation, Pollution

Night flights at Heathrow, Gatwick & Stansted
Published Monday, February 6, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers SN01252
This paper explains how the night flight regimes at the UK’s three designated airports, Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, are set and what the current proposals are for the period 2017-22.
Transport: passenger rights, compensation and complaints
Published Wednesday, January 18, 2017 | Commons Briefing papers SN03163
This briefing paper provides information on passenger rights, compensation and how to make a complaint across four forms of transport: rail, bus and coach, air and sea (ferries and cruise ships).
Airports in the South East of England
Published Wednesday, November 23, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers SN02893
This paper looks at airport development in London and the South East under the present and previous governments, including the work of the Airports Commission, and how airports are planning to develop their current services.

Topic: Aviation

The Northern Powerhouse
Published Tuesday, November 1, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7676
This briefing paper provides a general overview of the UK Government’s plans for a “Northern Powerhouse”. It explains the origins of the Northern Powerhouse concept, the policy and funding commitments set out by Government, the implications for changes in governance and a look at the future in light of the policies of the new Prime Minister, Theresa May, and the UK’s decision to leave the European Union.
Brexit: impact across policy areas
Published Friday, August 26, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7213
This Commons Library briefing paper looks at the situation in a range of policy areas and considers what impact Brexit might have. This will depend, among other things, on the Brexit negotiations, whether the UK stays in the European Economic Area and how the Government fills any policy gaps left by withdrawal.
Sources of Statistics: Transport
Published Wednesday, July 13, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers SN03853
This introductory guide provides sources of statistics on transport.

Topics: Aviation, Railways, Roads

Regional airports
Published Tuesday, April 26, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers SN00323
This paper looks at policy affecting airports in the UK, outside London and the South East of England, including the work of the Airports Commission and debates around it, and financial support for lifeline services.

Topic: Aviation

Parliamentary debate 20/4/16: Effect of aircraft noise on local communities
Published Monday, April 18, 2016 | Commons Debate packs CDP-2016-0084
This is a short overview of the issues that may be discussed in the debate in Westminster Hall on 20 April 2016 between 9.30 and 11am, Effect of aircraft noise on local communities. The Member who secured the debate is Tom Tugendhat MP (Con., Tonbridge and Malling).

Topics: Aviation, Pollution

Debate pack: Cabin air safety and aerotoxic syndrome
Published Wednesday, March 16, 2016 | Commons Debate packs CDP-2016-0068
This pack has been prepared ahead of the debate in Westminster Hall on Thursday 17 March 2016 at 1.30pm on cabin air safety and aerotoxic syndrome. The Members in charge are Jonathan Reynolds, Graham Brady, and Dawn Butler

Topic: Aviation

Civilian Drones
Published Wednesday, February 10, 2016 | Lords In Focus LIF-2016-0013
This House of Lords Library briefing considers the increasing use of civilian drones and the regulations governing their use.
Air passenger duty : recent debates & reform
Published Tuesday, January 12, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers SN05094
This note looks at the recent debate on taxing aviation, in the context of concerns about the structure of air passenger duty, the rates of tax, and the Coalition Government's reform of the tax in the 2014 Budget. The development of APD since its introduction is set out in two other Library notes (SN413 & SN6426).

Topics: Aviation, Taxation

Effect of airport expansion on the Anglian Region
Published Friday, January 8, 2016 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7450
This note provides some background to a Westminster Hall Debate on the 'Effect of airport expansion on the Anglian region'.

Topics: Aviation, Railways, Roads

Independent Aviation Noise Authority
Published Wednesday, December 16, 2015 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7433
This short briefing provides information on the Independent Aviation Noise Authority as proposed by the Airports Commission, what it might do and whether it is going to happen.

Topics: Aviation, Pollution

Displaying 21-40 out of 85

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.


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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