Topic: Welfare and equalities

Poverty and inequality are financial challenges for local authorities and threaten the cohesion of their communities.



Swift Read: Food Insecurity and Poverty

The pandemic has highlighted various faults in the UK’s food systems, from the quality of free school meals and their provision over holidays to soaring food bank numbers. This briefing outlines some of the most recent issues and policies regarding food and poverty in Scotland, where food insecurity is more prevalent than in the rest…

Scotland Briefing

The Work Programme: A Quantitative Impact Assessment

The Department for Work and Pensions report published in November 2020 and summarised in this briefing is an impact assessment of the Work Programme, which stopped accepting new referrals in April 2017. The evaluation remains relevant because the UK has embarked on new large scale labour market programmes in response to the economic impact of…

England & Wales, Scotland Briefing

Swift Read: Recovery – if not now, when?

“We may all be in the same storm, but we are all in different boats” was the analogy used in the opening line of the report. The pandemic has exposed pre-existing inequalities in Scotland and has had a disproportionate impact on minority groups including disabled people, minority ethnic communities, those on lower incomes, older people,…

Scotland Briefing

Unfinished business

Local government has been financially under resourced and the policy agenda has underserved in key areas of service, democracy and community. This latest pillar in our Post-Covid Councils project sets out a blueprint for the thinking we need to generate some vital momentum around these pieces of Unfinished Business.

England & Wales Publication

Healthy economy, healthy people, healthy planet: achieving a net zero UK

Introduction The past 12 months have seen the Covid-19 pandemic ravish societies and economies the world over. Throughout this period, the twin challenges of the climate and ecological crises have continued to build momentum as extreme weather events, from floods in the UK to wildfires in Australia, wreak havoc on lives, homes and livelihoods. Much…

England & Wales, Scotland Briefing

Work and Pensions Select Committee report: Universal Credit and the five-week wait

The five-week waiting period for new claims to Universal Credit has been the subject of some considerable controversy. The Work and Pensions Select Committee’s October 2020 report on this and the wider context is analysed here, along with the government’s response.

England & Wales, Scotland Briefing

Bundle: 20-Minute Neighbourhoods

With lockdowns imposed across the globe, Covid-19 put a magnifying glass over local infrastructure – in many cases exposing gaps and inequality. The result has been renewed enthusiasm for 20-minute cities, which prioritise local access to services. In this bundle, we dive into the urban planning ideal to provide a local government perspective.

England & Wales, Global, Ireland, Scotland Publication
Free with sign in

Rough sleeping and Covid-19

More than 33,000 rough sleepers were offered places in hotel and other emergency accommodation between March and November last year. What does the successful ‘Everyone In’ scheme demonstrate about the scale of the homelessness problem in England and whether the government is any closer to a long-term solution?

England & Wales Briefing
Members & Global Local

Regional inequality and centralisation

Can lifting up local be centrally led? The balance of fiscal and decision-making powers between central and local governments can be difficult to get right as we explore in this newsletter.


Towards creating a strategy for 20-minute neighbourhoods

So you want to implement a 20-minute neighbourhood strategy in your town or city – what next? This blog outlines the key requirements of a 20-minute neighbourhood before covering practical actions councils can take to formulate a strategy and start making changes.

Australia, England & Wales, Global, Ireland, Scotland Blog Post Blog