Monthly Archives: March 2012

The REF doesn’t capture what government wants from academics or how academic impact on policymaking takes place

Following on from the recent debate at the ‘From Research to Policy: Academic Impacts on Government’ conference, Jane Tinkler finds that the academic expertise and luck required for a piece of research to be considered valuable by government in policymaking is not valued by the Research Excellence Framework. This article first appeared on the LSE Impact of Social Science blog This month […]

March 31st, 2012|Impact, Jane Tinkler|1 Comment|

The EU’s Tobacco Products Directive seeks to ‘nudge’ citizens whilst preserving individual choice about smoking

In recent years, governments have been embracing policies that ‘nudge’ citizens into making decisions that are better for their own health and welfare, and the European Commission has embraced this ‘libertarian paternalism’ in its review of the Tobacco Products Directive. Alberto Alemanno explains that by introducing measures such as plain packaging and display bans, the European Union may be able […]

Peeved Tory donors, pasty-gate and self-defeating austerity: Top 5 blogs you might have missed this week

Left Foot Forward gives a view of the fuel strike dispute from the perspective of one of the tanker drivers.

Bagehot at The Economist argues that pasty-gate cannot simply be explained by references to out of touch toffs; rather ‘officer-class’ Cameron is seen as being too grand and centrist for the likes of the ‘sturdy, old fashioned right’.

The FT’s Westminster Blog notes […]

The results of the Bradford West by-election indicate that something clearly went wrong with the Labour campaign, and that there is a political space for populists like Galloway

Lewis Baston looks at the results of the by-election in Bradford West and explains how the particularities of the constituency enabled George Galloway’s victory. He argues that the results confirm that there is a big political space for populists and celebrities, and that the Labour party’s vote is clearly soft and vulnerable. The by-election campaign in Bradford West went nearly unnoticed by politicians and the media. The outcome has been […]

What we’ve learnt from a weird week in politics

Charlie Beckett mulls over the implications of a less than usual week in Westminster and beyond.  When Harold Wilson said that thing about long weeks in politics*, I don’t think he had grannies, pasties, jerrycans and Bradford Muslims in mind. This has been a particularly febrile seven days in political communications – what do you think we have learnt? Here are […]

Charging for freedom of information requests for services that are already paid for by taxpayers is utterly wrong

The government is considering introducing charges for freedom of information requests. David Hencke argues that this would be fundamentally unjustifiable  as it would limit both people’s right to know and the right to demand information on services they have already paid for.  It must be very tempting in these times of austerity for government to introduce charges for freedom of information […]

Party financing scandals have created the perception that influence can be bought. Reforming the system is unlikely as both parties benefit from the status quo

In the wake of the cash-for-access scandal, it is certainly relevant to discuss how political parties are financed in the UK. Bart Cammaerts argues that this latest scandal will unlikely lead to reform as both major parties benefit from the status quo, leading to gridlock on the issue.  Democracy does not come cheap. Parties require ample funding to pay their staff, […]

The Health and Social Care Bill is now law, but its implementation will be fraught with challenges

The real impact of the Health Care reforms depends not on their design but on their implementation. Anna Dixon argues that the government has largely failed to win the support of the medical profession for the Act – as it now is – and yet without their support it is difficult to see how they can make this work.  After […]