Research and innovation

This page highlights some of the current parliamentary material available on research, development and innovation. This includes select committee reports, briefing papers on current legislation and other subjects produced by the parliamentary research services, and the latest Early Day Motions put down by MPs.

Commons Briefing Papers

DateDescription
25.11.2015Support for science
Public funding for research comes from a mix of devolved (e.g. Higher Education Funding Council for England) and UK (e.g. Research Councils) institutions. Bodies like Innovate UK have a specific focus on industrial research.
16.11.2015Social Indicators 2015
This Research Paper summarises a wide range of social statistics. Subjects covered include agriculture, crime, defence, education, elections, environment and energy, health, housing, local government, population and migration, social security and transport.
13.11.2015Research and development expenditure: Social Indicators page
UK research and development expenditure with regional breakdown and international comparisons.
13.10.2015Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Bill 2015-16
This Commons Library briefing provides information on the main provisions of the Access to Medical Treatments (Innovation) Bill 2015-16 and on the development of previous legislation on medical innovation (the Bill builds upon provisions in Lord Saatchi's Medical Innovation Bill 2014-15).
21.07.2015Spending on Research and Development in the UK
How much is spent on research and development in the UK? How is this spending broken down by region, industry and government department? In answering these and related questions, this note presents and examines a wide range of data relating to R&D in the UK.
24.07.2014Energy Storage R&D
There is a widely held view that electricity storage has a role to play in the future of energy, helping to integrate increasing levels of renewable generation into the UK generation mix
10.03.2014Care.data
This note provides information about the introduction of the NHS care.data system and the use of patients' data for research, and about how patients' can opt out of having information from their medical records shared through this system.
09.03.2007The Statistics and Registration Service Bill, Committee Stage Report
The Statistics and Registration Service Bill, Committee Stage Report. House of Commons Library Research Paper 07/25
10.01.2007Social Indicators
Social indicators. [Includes articles on Research and Development in the UK and Prison Population. Also includes topical subject page on The Weather] House of Commons Library Research Paper 07/02.

Lords Library Notes

DateDescription
12.07.2013Debate on 18 July: Role of Government in Generating Economic Prosperity and Employment
This Note outlines recent data on the performance of the UK economy, announcements by the Government for capital spending, spending on research and development and action to help businesses gain access to funding. It also looks at proposals for the Government to take more of a role in managing growth, in particular whether the UK needs a more coherent and long-term industrial strategy.
15.10.2012Debate on 18 October: Scott Expedition to Antarctica and Scientific Legacy
This Library Note provides background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday, 18 October: 'the centenary of the Scott Expedition to Antarctica and of the United Kingdom's enduring scientific legacy and ongoing presence there'.

POSTnotes

DateDescription
16.12.2015Policing Domestic Abuse
Domestic abuse refers to a range of behaviours - psychological, physical, sexual, financial and emotional - that are directed towards partners, ex-partners or family members. This POSTnote examines the prevalence and nature of domestic abuse and the policing response. It examines how the policing response could be informed by research about the effectiveness of current and alternative approaches, and the possible benefits for victims, their families and offenders.
15.12.2015UK Commercial Space Activities
The UK space industry had a turnover of 11.8bn in 2012/13.1 By 2030, the UK Government and industry want this to grow to 40bn. In December 2015 the Government published the UK's first National Space Policy, which sets out its vision for achieving growth. This POSTnote describes the UK space industry and potential barriers to growth.
22.10.2015Automation in Military Operations
Automated technology is increasingly used in military activities such as intelligence gathering, navigation and weapons delivery. The most widespread use of automated technology to date has been remotely piloted air systems. However, each of the main military domains - air, land and sea - make use of automation. This POSTnote outlines current and potential future applications of automation in intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and in combat. It then summarises debate over legal, ethical and societal issues, including debate over whether a pre-emptive ban is needed on future lethal autonomous weapons systems.
22.10.2015Unintentional Bias in Court
When asked to interpret information and draw conclusions, people are prone to a number of well understood, unintentional errors in reasoning called cognitive biases. This POSTnote examines how cognitive biases affect reasoning and decision-making, and outlines strategies to minimise their influence in court.
19.10.2015Trends in ICT
This note looks at developments in information and communication technology (ICT) and their relevance for UK policy in the next five years. It examines the capability, use and economic impact of ICT; technical barriers; and implications for cybersecurity, privacy and internet governance.
22.09.2015Trends in Compulsory Education
This POSTnote focuses on trends in UK compulsory education and outlines where trends differ between individual nations.

Select Committee Reports

DateDescription
07.09.2011Strategically important metals.
Government response. Science and Technology Select Committee; Department for Business, Innovation and Skills report [Commons]
07.09.2011UK Centre for Medical Research and Innovation.
Government response. Science and Technology Select Committee; Department for Business, Innovation and Skills report [Commons]
18.07.2011Peer review in scientific publication.
Science and Technology Select Committee report [Commons]
17.05.2011Public procurement as a tool to stimulate innovation.
Science and Technology Select Committee (HL) report [Lords]
04.05.2011Strategically important metals.
Science and Technology Select Committee report [Commons]

Early Day Motions

DateDescription
11.01.2012WIDE MINDS NETWORK
That this House congratulates the work of Wide Minds, or WiMi, a network that acts as a forum for innovation and best practice in digital learning; notes that WiMi has a presence in ...
08.12.2011AMERICIUM-241
That this House notes that Americium-241 is a by-product of nuclear power stations such as those in Heysham; further notes that the University of Leicester is now developing radio isotope ...
09.11.2011ANTIBIOTIC ACTION INITIATIVE
That this House notes the importance of the aims of the Antibiotic Action Initiative of the British Society for Antimicrobial Chemotherapy that is examining ways to encourage the discovery, ...
19.10.2011IMPLEMENTATION OF BUSINESS, INNOVATION AND SKILLS COMMITTEE REPORT ON PUB COMPANIES
That this House welcomes the finalreport by the Business, Innovation and Skills Committee on Pub Companies (Tenth Report of Session 2010-12, HC 1369-I), which found that industry self-regulation ...
14.07.2011SPACE SCIENCE CONTRIBUTION TO THE BRITISH ECONOMY
That this House notes that space science and exploration, an area of world leadership in the UK's science base, has delivered significant long-term economic benefits, in addition to ...

Glossary

  • Commons Briefing Papers (CBP) 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.
  • Early Day Motions (EDMs) - formal motions submitted by MPs in the House of Commons
  • POSTnotes (POST PN) - 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
  • Lords Library Notes (LLN) - 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.
  • Select Committee Reports - papers produced by all select committees of both Houses