The government recently announced plans to allow councillors to attend meetings by video link - for those on Combined Authorities or Joint Committees. The idea of remote attendance was first raised twelve years ago. Will the government follow through the recent consultation and should the consultation have gone further?
The UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights has published his final report. It is extremely critical of the impact of austerity on vulnerable groups and of various aspects of welfare reform, particularly some design features of Universal Credit.
Updates on the new school curriculum which will be mandatory from September 2020, and the debate around its contents.
The Committee on Standards in Public Life has looked closely at the standards regime, and considers the significance of maintaining standards for the better governance of the council as a whole. It presents a stark warning that change is needed if councils are to retain a reputation for good governance.
The news publishing industry has been losing readers and advertising revenue for much of the last decade. This contraction, resulting mainly from technological change and the way people consume news, is not just of concern to the journalists that it employs. It also has major implications for local democracy.
Data privacy is a complex and contested issue, often obscured in jargon and compounded by a presence in and out of the media spotlight. This briefing summarises the findings of a Carnegie UK Trust report on online data privacy.
Efforts are being made to better understand and to regulate the environment of ‘fake news’ in an increasingly poisonous and potentially dangerous political environment. Intervention is needed at government and at international level. A government White Paper is expected during the next six months. What issues should it address?
Huge claims are made for the potential of Artificial Intelligence. We look here at recent reports on AI, how AI can support services, and the key issues and challenges that arise in implementing AI.
Government proposals to develop services to support the mental health of children and young people include an institution-based ‘Designated Senior Lead’ to work with new Mental Health Support Teams, and much more.
Evidence has been accumulating that many challenges and barriers are built into the electoral process for people experiencing disabilities. While some measures have been taken to address mobility and visual issues, those with learning difficulties or mental illness are facing particular obstacles that are not yet being addressed.