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 1-20 out of 92

What if there's no Brexit deal?
Published Monday, September 10, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8397
What could happen if the EU and UK negotiators don't agree a withdrawal agreement in time and the UK has to leave the EU on 29 March 2019 without one - and with no framework for future relations either? This paper looks at how such a situation might come about, the constitutional implications for the UK and the devolved administrations, and what the impact might be in a range of policy areas.
The Combat Air Strategy: From Typhoon to 'Tempest'?
Published Friday, August 31, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8391
The Government's Combat Air Strategy sets out the Government's ambition to develop a new combat aircraft for the 2030's. This Commons Library briefing paper provides a brief overview of the Strategy.
The Brexit White Paper on future relations and alternative proposals
Published Tuesday, August 28, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8387
The Government published its White Paper on future relations between the UK and the EU on 12 July. It envisages a 'common rulebook' to facilitate 'frictionless' trade, and among other things, UK cooperation in security matters, a commitment to maintain high environmental, data and consumer protection standards, UK participation in some EU agencies and solutions to the Irish border issues - all underpinned by a new governance structure that will pay "due regard" to the EU Court. Would the White Paper proposals work and do they respect both UK sovereignty and the indivisibility of the EU Single Market? David Davis's 'alternative' white paper proposes a somewhat different future relationship. This paper looks at proposals in both documents.
Air passenger duty and regional airports
Published Tuesday, August 21, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7333
Air passenger duty (APD) is charged on all passenger flights from UK airports. Some regional airports have campaigned for lower rates of tax being charged on flights from the regions.

Topics: Aviation, Taxation

Brexit reading list: economic, business and transport policy issues
Published Monday, July 16, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7830
The Commons Library has compiled, from a wide range of sources, a selection of analysis and comment relevant to the UK's forthcoming withdrawal from the European Union.
Air passenger duty : recent debates & reform
Published Sunday, July 8, 2018 | 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 reform to the structure of APD in the 2014 Budget. The development of APD since its introduction is set out in two other Library notes (CBP413 & CBP6426).

Topics: Aviation, Taxation

Heathrow Airport
Published Wednesday, June 20, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers SN01136
This paper provides information on Heathrow Airport, including who owns it, how it is regulated, how it deals with noise and uses its runways and its plans to expand capacity with a third runway. It also sets out Government and regulatory policy in regard to the above and explains how the Parliamentary processes for approving a National Policy Statement and the planning processes for a Development Consent Order may proceed.

Topic: Aviation

Airports in the South East of England
Published Tuesday, June 5, 2018 | 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

Laser Misuse (Vehicles) Act 2018
Published Wednesday, May 30, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8263
This paper provides an overview of the Laser Misuse (Vehicles) Act 2018. The Act provides for new offences of shining or directing a laser beam towards a vehicle or air traffic facility, for which the maximum penalty would be imprisonment up to 5 years, an unlimited fine, or both.

Topic: Aviation

Prospects for combat air: What follows Typhoon and Lightning?
Published Tuesday, May 15, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8304
This Commons Library briefing paper looks at the RAF's current and future combat aircraft fleet, the UK aerospace industry and prospects for international collaboration ahead of the publication of the Combat Air Strategy.
Parliamentary debate 25/4/18 - Transport for the South East
Published Tuesday, April 24, 2018 | Commons Debate packs CDP-2018-0100
This debate will take place between 2.30 and 4.00 pm on 25 April in Westminster Hall. The Member who secured the debate is Huw Merriman MP (Con., Bexhill and Battle).

Topics: Aviation, Railways, Roads

Brexit: new guidelines on the framework for future EU-UK relations
Published Thursday, April 19, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-8289
Brexit negotiations have resumed and this third phase will cover issues outstanding from the last phases - the Irish border in particular - and the framework for future EU-UK relations. This paper looks at how the EU and the UK envisage their relationship after Brexit.
Brexit and transport
Published Monday, April 16, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7633
This Commons Library briefing paper discusses some of the pertinent issues in the four main transport policy areas: aviation, railways, roads and road-based public transport, and maritime. It will be updated and expanded as more information is published and new issues emerge.
Access to transport for disabled people
Published Monday, March 5, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers SN00601
This paper explains the legislative frameworks and policies that apply to public transport users with disabilities or reduced mobility.
Estimates - Spending of the Department of Transport
Published Friday, February 23, 2018 | Commons Debate packs CDP-2018-0050
The new-style Estimates day debates provides the House with an opportunity to explore and scrutinise in more detail the DfT’s spending plans and priorities.
Airspace change and modernisation
Published Tuesday, January 30, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7889
This paper looks at the structure and management of airspace in the UK and the wider international context. It explains how airspace functions at the moment and proposals to upgrade and improve it, including the EU Single European Sky programme and the UK’s Future Airspace Strategy.

Topic: Aviation

Transport 2018: FAQ for MPs
Published Thursday, January 11, 2018 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7954
This paper sets out answers to commonly asked questions by Members of Parliament about various aspects of transport policy, usually related to constituency issues.
Topics of Interest 2018
Published Monday, January 8, 2018 | POSTbriefs POST-PB-0027
This list sets out the topic areas identified of possible parliamentary interest under the 9 different category headings (Agriculture, Fisheries, Food and Forestry, Crime, Defence, Education and Skills, Energy, Environment, Health, ICT and Robotics and Transport and Infrastructure).
Laser Misuse (Vehicles) Bill [HL]: Briefing for Lords Stages
Published Thursday, December 21, 2017 | Lords Library notes LLN-2017-0103
This House of Lords Library Briefing has been prepared in advance of the second reading in the House of Lords of the Laser Misuse (Vehicles) Bill [HL] on 9 January 2018.

Displaying 1-20 out of 92

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House of Commons Library

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

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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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