Will a Greater Manchester Mayor mean even more great stuff happens?

At the Summat New event in Leeds, a group of 20 people from the North, who had never met before, sat in a circle and asked this question: “Are the voices of people living and working in places in the north of England fairly heard in our national conversation?” Here Andrew Wilson answers the question. The […]


Against Ad Hocery: UK Devolution and the Need for Consultation, Consensus and Consideration

Last month the Political and Constitutional Reforms Committee published a report on the future of devolution, in the wake of the Scottish Referendum. Here Dave Richards and Martin Smith pick the report apart and look at the implications for devolution in the UK. The newly published report on the Future of Devolution after the Scottish […]

Job Centre

The redundancy trauma

Around 2.7 million people were made redundant in the UK during the ‘Great Recession’. Dr James Laurence examines the legacy of distrust created by those redundancies. The impact of the recession is the dominant back-drop to the General Election campaign. Politicians from all parties explain their approach to the continuing fiscal deficit. Yet there is […]

pensions rip off

The great pension rip-off

Workers and employers pay a fortune into pension schemes. Yet they put up with a system that delivers very poor value for money, explains John Read. Pension schemes face serious challenges – an ageing society and poor investment returns following the ‘Great Recession’ are just two of them. In short, pension systems have not moved […]

The Sun

Statistics, the Sun and government press offices

Reporting the relationship between mental illness and homicide and suicide must be handled sensitively. When it is not, a social media firestorm can follow, explains Professor Louis Appleby. It was about 18 months ago, late at night, when I checked my Twitter timeline for news. What I found took me by surprise. The mental health […]

Muslims at prayer

Why are Muslims less accepted than other minorities in Britain?

Negative attitudes towards Muslims may cause discrimination and disadvantage. Dr Ingrid Storm considers the reasons why prejudice is still high. Muslims are less accepted in Britain than other religious and ethnic minorities. Such heightened negative attitudes could contribute to discrimination in the labour market, segregation and social conflicts. In a recent Policy@Manchester blog by Rob […]


Plain packaging essential to save children from smoking-related deaths

In the last days of the old Parliament, MPs agreed that from May next year cigarettes may only be sold in plain packaging. Dr Peter Mackereth congratulates politicians for their willingness to stand up to the tobacco industry, but warns the companies are fighting back. Almost a quarter of children aged 11 to 15 in […]


Reorganising the NHS: Never again?

As we approach the election, the  prospect of yet more organisational restructuring for the NHS fills Kieran Walshe with dismay.  The next government needs to focus more on changes which make a difference to patients, and which are founded on good evidence about what works. The ability to hold two conflicting positions in your mind […]


Can performance pay in primary care reduce mortality?

Government policy assumed that incentives for general practice through performance-related-pay would improve mortality rates and other outcomes. Its scheme for doing this appears not to have worked as intended, explains Evangelos Kontopantelis. Primary care has enormous potential for improving population health outcomes – including mortality from common chronic conditions – through early intervention in the […]


What role might cities play in UK asylum policy?

Government policy towards asylum seekers is being challenged. Dr Jonathan Darling asks if this should become part of the debate on the devolution of powers. Disagreements between local authorities and the Home Office over asylum seeker dispersal numbers and arrangements have a long-standing history in Britain. Yet recently they have garnered greater media attention due […]