House of Commons Library

Key Issues for the 2015 Parliament

Published Tuesday, May 19, 2015

This book examines the key issues facing the House of Commons over the course of the 2015 Parliament - from the public finances to the UK’s membership of the EU and from school places for children to climate change.

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What are the key issues that the 2015 Parliament might face?

The specialists in the House of Commons Library have produced a series of articles as a topical guide to the issues of interest to the new Parliament, and an insight into the quality of work that MPs can expect from our research service.

You can also view these articles on our Key Issues webpages

Politics and Parliament

Includes

  • Why were the opinion polls so different from the actual General Election result?
  • Will the 2015 Parliament see the continued ‘rise of the backbencher’?  

 

Decentralisation

Includes:

  • How much power will be devolved to the legislatures in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland during the 2015 Parliament?
  • Will the ‘English Question’ be answered before the next election?

 

Social change

Includes:

  • What can Parliament do to reduce mental health stigma?
  • What are the challenges faced by an ageing population?

 

Social Protection

Includes:

  • What is the most effective way to direct government support for childcare?
  • Will enough new housing be built to meet increasing demand?

 

Education

Includes:

  • Will there be enough school places where they are needed?
  • Is the academies programme going to be extended or curtailed?

 

Health

Includes:

  • Will closely integrated health and social care services improve quality while keeping costs down?
  • Is a minimum price for alcohol the way to reduce excessive consumption and associated harm?

 

Justice

Includes

  • How will the question of prisoner voting right be resolved?
  • How should the police be held accountable politically to the communities they serve?

 

Defence & Security

Includes:

  • Can the UK afford to defend itself?
  • Is replacing Trident compatible with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty?

 

Foreign Affairs

Includes:

  • How successful have efforts been to meet the Millennium Development Goals?
  • What are the options for reforming the EU to better reflect the UK’s interests?

 

Economy & Public Finances

Includes:

  • Regulating banks — have we learned the lessons of 2008?
  • Reducing the budget deficit - what challenges does the Government face?

 

Industry & Infrastructure

Includes:

  • What questions need to be answered about airport expansion and high speed rail?
  • How can the new Government help farmers manage uncertainty and bolster their resilience?

 

Work

Includes:

  • What level should the National Minimum Wage be set at and at what rate should it be increased over time?
  • Will the growth in self-employment continue and what are the implications?

 

Consumers & Personal Finance

Includes:

  • How to ensure adequate retirement incomes without placing an undue strain on the public purse?
  • Ensuring consumers are capable of making well-informed choices about financial services.

 

Energy & Climate Change

Includes:

  • Will 2015 be the year we make or break the climate?
  • How will the Government balance the need for adequate investment and keeping consumer energy bills in check?

 

Media

Includes:

  • What opportunities are there for Government, Parliament and the public to influence how the BBC is financed and operated?
  • Press regulation - how to ensure that the press is both free and responsible?

 

Technology

Includes:

  • How will the opportunities presented by big data be realised?
  • What is the darknet? Who uses it, and what for?

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