General Reports and Other Publications

ESRC: As societies emerge from conflict, men’s dominance at all levels of decision-making ensures women never feel truly secure according to new research funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

In a unique study of women’s security and participation in three post conflict societies - Northern Ireland, South Africa and Lebanon - researchers found that women see security differently from men. And because men dominate the institutions of peace-making and peace-building, they often fail to consider the specific security needs of women.

In all three case studies, women saw security as much more than physical safety. It was about feeling represented in societal institutions, having a job, an education for their children, a good health service and a feeling that society recognised the specific interests of women.
Press release ~ ‘Re-imagining Women’s Security: a Comparative Study of South Africa, Northern Ireland and Lebanon’ ~ ESRC New Security Challenges Programme ~ ESRC Society Today

Arts Council: Lack of interest and lack of time are the main barriers that stop more people from engaging with the arts, according to a survey of over 28,000 adults. Over a third of people who hadn’t participated in any arts activities over the last year said this was because they had no interest in the arts and a further third of people blamed this on a busy lifestyle.

The DCMS has released the results of the Taking Part survey, the first in-depth study of how people spend their leisure time and the report highlights a variety of reasons why different population groups fail to engage with the arts. Lack of interest is the main reason in lower socio-economic groups, but for higher socio-economic groups lack of time is the key.

Press release ~ Taking Part survey

NAO: The National Audit Office has called for a step change improvement in how central government departments work with each other and with regional and local bodies, if the Government’s ambitious aspirations for the Thames Gateway region are to be realised.

The report stresses that the Government still does not have a single overall, fully costed plan for the programme to join up local initiatives, commit central government to key infrastructure projects and consider progress across funding streams.

The NAO calls on the Department for Communities and Local Government to:

Press release ~ The Thames Gateway: Laying the Foundations ~ Execut ive Summary ~ Th ames Gateway Landmark Map ~ Code for Sustainable Homes ~ London Development Agency ~ London Thames Gateway Housing Sites Database ~ London Thames Gateway Development Corporation ~ Thames Gateway London Partnership ~ CLG - Thames Gateway ~ Creating Sustainable Communities: Delivering the Thames Gateway(2.5Mb) ~ Creating Sustainable Communities: Delivering Greenspace in the Thames Gateway

HL: Homeless Link has recently completed research into the facilities available to homeless drug users attempting to reduce their use or kick their habit. The findings of this research are detailed in Clean Break, a new report which reveals that, whilst some excellent facilities were identified, overall provision is lacking.
All too often people trying to get or stay clean are placed in hostels where there are people still actively using drugs, increasing the likelihood of relapse. The report identifies a number of agencies that provide specialised accommodation designated for people who want to make a clean break from drug use, where the success rate is much higher.
Press release ~ Clean Break: Development of integrated housing and care pathways for drug users

NE: Action is needed now to prevent the loss of some of the UK's most valued plants and wildlife as a result of climate change, according to a new report by Natural England. The MONARCH report illustrates potential impacts of climate change on some of our most rare or threatened species, under different projected levels of greenhouse gas emissions to the 2080s.

Also launched last week was ‘Conserving biodiversity in a changing climate’, which provides guidance on and explains six key strategies that can be used now by land managers, to help wildlife adapt to climate change.

The guidance recommends that to allow species to find new homes as climate changes, it will be necessary to manage entire landscapes, not just the protected sites where species now occur.
Press release ~ MONARCH (Modelling Natural Resource Responses to Climate Change) ~ Monarch report ~ Conserving Biodiversity in a changing climate ~ Millennium Ecosystem Assessment ~ Parliamentary report: Millennium Ecosystem Assessment ~ Natural England

DTI: A report of the first stage of a new study, examining how the Home Office manages & uses science, has been published by Sir David King, the Government's Chief Scientific Adviser, in the form of an open letter to Sir David Normington, the Home Office Permanent Secretary.

The key recommendations contained in the report centre around the need for the Home Office to:

Press release ~Report

HM Treasury: Ed Balls, Economic Secretary to the Treasury has launched the evaluation report of the second Saving Gateway pilot and outlined the Government's next steps on this key initiative. Saving Gateway is a savings account designed for lower income groups to encourage them to save & engage with mainstream financial services.

He claimed that the results of the second Saving Gateway pilot show overwhelmingly that the principle of matching savers' contributions helps those on lower incomes to save, to learn the savings habit and use mainstream financial institutions.
Press release ~ Saving Gateway website and Pilot 1 and 2 reports ~ Helping People to Save ~ FSA Money made clear – products explained

DfT: The Department for Transport has published a report on potential reform in the trust port sector in England and Wales. The report was commissioned to help the Department understand how the potential of trust ports can be fully exploited and to recommend ways in which they can improve their accountability and financial performance.

Trust ports are independent statutory bodies, governed by unique legislation and controlled by an independent board rather than shareholders. More than fifty ports in England and Wales are trust ports - including Dover, Milford Haven, and the Port of London Authority (which holds conservancy duties for the Thames Estuary).

Press release ~ Pr icewaterhouse Coopers Report ~ DfT- Modernising trust ports

DWP: Landlords' responses to the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA): A research report published by the Department for Work and Pensions explores landlords' awareness of & responses to the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), looking particularly at issues relating to changes to policies and procedures & adjustments. The new DDA duties for landlords came into force in December 2006.
Press release ~ Research Report 429 - Landlords' responses to the Disability Discrimination Act ~ Summary version ~ DWP report 410 ~ 'Improving the Life Chances of Disabled People' ~ Office for Disability Issues (ODI)

ESRC: Skills being used in British workplaces have been rising for the last two decades, but the pace of change has slowed in the last five years, according to a new study published by the ESRC Research Centre on Skills, Knowledge and Organisational Performance (SKOPE).

The report, Skills At Work, 1986 to 2006 gives the first findings from the 2006 Skills Survey, a nationally representative survey of 4,800 working individuals in Britain aged 20-65 and similar surveys carried out over the last two decades, which collected a wealth of information about the skills utilised at work, and about workers’ views on training and work, and about their pay and well-being.
Press release ~ Skills At Work, 1986 to 2006 ~ ESRC Research Centre on Skills, Knowledge and Organisational Performance (SKOPE) ~ 2006 Skills Survey ~ ESRC Society Today

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