LGA Research bulletin

This monthly publication keeps you informed of key issues and developments in research impacting on, or of interest to, local government.

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This monthly publication keeps you informed of key issues and developments in research impacting on, or of interest to, local government.

Sign up for the LGA Research Bulletin.

April Analysis and Research Bulletin

Welcome to the Local Government Association (LGA) Analysis and Research Bulletin.

This comprehensive monthly publication keeps you informed about key issues and developments in research impacting on local government.

The bulletin brings together the work of the LGA and also features relevant publications from the wider research community. The information in this bulletin is grouped under themed areas. This publication is produced by LGA Research and Information and we provide high quality analysis and research across all aspects of local government.

Health and social care

Putting good into practice: a public dialogue on making public benefit assessments when using health and care data
The Putting Good into Practice public dialogue was commissioned in March 2020 by the National Data Guardian for Health and Social Care (NDG) and Understanding Patient Data (UPD) and UK Research and Innovation’s Sciencewise programme. It aims to allow the NDG and UPD to understand how people assess public benefit in the use of health and adult social care data for purposes beyond individual care.

In mid-April,  the findings report for the public dialogue stage was published on the NDG website. This stage involved discussions with more than 100 members of the public about how to make sure health and care data is used in ways that benefit people and society. The NDG will use the insights to develop guidance to support people making decisions about access to data for research and innovation.

Ageing in a rural place - UK
This paper from The Centre for Ageing Better provides a commentary on the challenges and opportunities for people ageing in rural and costal places in the UK.

Coronavirus and the social impacts on Great Britain: 16 April 2021
This Office for National Statistics (ONS) publication provides indicators from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey to understand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people, households and communities in Great Britain.

Longer waits, missing patients and catching up - England
This analysis from The Health Foundation considers what is known about the impact of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic on elective care in England.

What is happening to life expectancy in England?
This updated article from The King’s Fund examines trends in life expectancy at birth up to 2020 and the impact of COVID-19 in 2020 and how  life expectancy in England compares with other countries.

Levels of loneliness by local authority in the UK
This ONS release considers how loneliness is associated with individual characteristics, household circumstances and aspects of the local authority where people live in the UK.

Shaping the future of digital technology in health and social care
This King’s Fund report provides a summary of evidence for how emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, smartphones, wearable devices and the internet of things are being used within care settings around the world.

Developing place-based partnerships: the foundation of effective integrated care systems
This report from The King’s Fund highlights the potential role of place-based partnerships in improving health and wellbeing and considers how these opportunities can be realised.

Education and young people

Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak – 23 March 2020 to 15 April 2021, England
These Department for Education (DfE) statistics provide information on attendance in education settings in England since Monday 23 March 2020 and early years settings in England from late March 2020 onwards.

Coronavirus and higher education students: England, 12 March to 22 March 2021
These ONS experimental statistics from the Student COVID-19 Insights Survey (SCIS) in England, include information on the behaviours, plans, opinions and well-being of higher education students in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Where next? what influences the choices school leavers make? - UK
This Universities and Colleges Admissions Service UCAS report considers what factors drive and enable student choice and decision making in the UK.

Vulnerable children and young people survey summary - Waves 1 to 21 - England
This Department for Education (DfE) publication provides a summary of the local authority vulnerable children and young people survey, conducted to help understand the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on children’s social care in England.

Improving responses to the sexual abuse of Black, Asian and minority ethnic children – England and Wales
This report from the Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) explores the perspectives of professionals working with children from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds that have experienced child sexual abuse in England and Wales.

Abuse in schools
The CSA Centre has produced a report summarising key messages from research on harmful behaviour in children and young people which includes information about effective interventions and interagency working.


Transport use during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic from 1 March 2020 – Great Britain
These Department for Transport (DfT) statistics provide information on the use of the transport system in Great Britain during the COVID-19 pandemic by mode since 1 March 2020.

Passenger rail service complaints: October to December 2020 – Great Britain
These Office of Rail and Road (ORR) passenger rail service complaints statistics in Great Britain cover the period 1 October 2020 to 31 December 2020.

Van statistics: 2019 to 2020 – Great Britain
These DfT statistics provide information on van activity in Great Britain, covering van keepership, mileage, where and when vans are travelling and environmental factors.


UK's carbon footprint 1997 – 2018
These Defra statistics provide details of annual greenhouse gas and carbon dioxide emissions relating to UK consumption between 1997 and 2018.

Local government

LG Inform updates:

Annual review of powers & duties and records retention now complete
The annual update of both powers & duties and records retention guidance (sign in required) in LG Inform Plus has been completed and the information is now live in each of the tools.

Key financial indicators report recently updated in LG Inform
Together with a plain language narrative, the Key Financial Indicators report provides a balanced picture of the financial position of a council relative to its peers and complements other data tools available.

The updated report can be accessed here. Use the modifiers to tune it in to your local area.

Metrics added to LG Inform this month include:

Local authority average weekly (social and affordable) rent – annual, England
For 2019/20 financial year, the average weekly local authority rent in England was £85.87, virtually unchanged from £86.85 in 2018/19. At £105.33 London is the region with the highest local authority average rent. The figures are published annually by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) using Local Authority Housing Statistics returns. 
Available Geographies: Country – Region – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District 

Average weekly Private Registered Provider (PRP) rent – annual, England
For 2020, average weekly Private Registered Provider rent in England was £94.25. At £71.46 Durham has the lowest average PRP rent, with highest average PRP rent at £130.62 in Brent. The MHCLG figures are based on stock available for social rent from the larger PRPs. 
Available Geographies: Country – Region – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District  

Total abortion rate per 1,000 population aged 15-44 – annual, England 
For 2019, the rate of abortions per 1,000 female population aged 15-44 years was 18.7 in England. The Department of Health data is sourced from abortion clinics.
Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District  

Sexual and Reproductive Health Services prescribed long acting reversible contraception (LARC) excluding injections rate per 1,000 population – annual, England
For 2019, the prescribed LARC excluding injections rate per 1,000 population was 20.8 in England. The North East at 28.9 is the region with the highest LARC rate and the West Midlands at 15.5 is the region with lowest rate. This Public Health England (PHE) data is based on NHS Digital Sexual and Reproductive Health Activity Data Set (SRHAD) and population estimates. 
Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District 

Employment, pay and workforce

The Happier, Healthier Professionals (HHP) research programme - England
This programme from What Works for Children’s Social Care aims to build evidence around what works for social worker well-being. The findings from the programme are now available.

Homeworking in the UK: hours, opportunities and rewards
This ONS publication provides an analysis of working from home in the UK between 2011 and 2020, including the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It looks at indicators of productivity and work success such as pay, hours worked, bonuses, promotions and more, including industry, region and demographic breakdowns.

Alternative Claimant Count statistics January 2013 to February 2021 - UK
These Department for Work and Pension (DWP) experimental statistics provide information on the number of people claiming unemployment related benefits and estimates of the proportion in-work between January 2013 and February 2021 in the UK.

UK labour market: December 2020 to February 2021
These ONS statistics provide estimates of employment, unemployment, inactivity, average weekly earnings, vacancies and other labour market related statistics for the UK between December 2020 and January 2021.

Labour market in the regions of the UK: December 2020 to February 2021
These ONS statistics provide regional, local authority and Parliamentary constituency breakdowns of changes in UK employment, unemployment, economic inactivity and other related statistics between December 2020 and February 2021.


What the first COVID-19 lockdown meant for people in insecure, poor-quality work - UK
This Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) briefing provides an overview of the impact of the first COVID-19 lockdown for those in insecure and poor-quality work.  

Evidence briefing: Levelling Up Fund interventions and impacts 
This What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth (WWCLEG) briefing summarises the available evidence on the economic impacts of transport interventions, physical regeneration projects and sport and culture investments. It is designed to help places better understand the likely economic effects of these types of project, helping them to design bids that are better-placed to deliver economic growth. 

Rural economic bulletin, April 2021 - England
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) quarterly rural economic bulletin is a 'dashboard' of indicators designed to provide evidence on the rural economy in England.

Coronavirus and the impact on output in the UK economy: February 2021
This ONS analysis provides details of monthly growth for the production, services and construction industries in the UK economy between January 2021 and February 2021, highlighting the impact from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coronavirus and the latest indicators for the UK economy and society: 22 April 2021
This ONS early experimental data provides information on the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on the UK economy and society as at 22 April 2021.

Forecasts for the UK economy: April 2021
This HM Treasury report provides a comparison of independent forecasts for the UK economy in April 2021.


Social housing lettings in England, April to September 2020
These Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) statistics provide information on new social housing lettings in England provided by local authorities and private registered providers between April and September 2020.

Right to Buy sales in England: October to December 2020
These MHCLG statistics provide information on the number of sales of dwellings under the Right to Buy scheme in England between October and December 2020.

Household resilience study: Wave 2 – November to December 2020 - England
This MHCLG report provides findings from Wave 2 of the Household Resilience Study, November to December 2020.

Statutory homelessness in England: October to December 2020
These MHCLG statistics provide information on statutory homelessness in England between October and December 2020.


Prison population figures – April 2021, England and Wales
This bulletin from the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) and Her Majesty’s Prison and Probation Service (HMPPS) provides prison population figures in England and Wales during April 2021.

Regular publications and events

National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) expressions of interest for Public Health Intervention Responsive Studies Team (PHIRST)
The NIHR Public Health Research (PHR) Programme are accepting expressions of interest from Local Authorities that have initiatives in need of research and evaluation.

The shortlisted Expressions of Interest will be given to  PHIRST to co-produce research into Local Authorities or equivalents in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland are invited to submit an expression of interest to identify specific initiatives within their work programmes, that will benefit from research or evaluation input.

LG Inform Webinar programme April - June 2021 now available
The LG Inform team would be delighted to meet you and share knowledge about the LG Inform and LG Inform Plus platforms. A programme of free webinars for between now and through to June 2021 is now available.

It is easy to book a place and discover more about the data, report writing and the various modules on offer. Just visit the online training page for more details and how to book. If you would like something more tailored to your needs please contact: [email protected]

The What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth (WWCLEG) 'How to evaluate' course – 11 and 18 May 2021
On 11 and 18 May 2021, WWCLEG will be running their second ‘How to evaluate’ course. This introductory course has been designed for policymakers and practitioners that would like to learn more about how to evaluate their local economic growth policies. This course is free to attend and will be held online via Zoom.
Find out more and sign up

Local Area Research and Intelligence Association (LARIA) Spring webinar series
Battling Covid-19 using research, analysis and insight

This series of LARIA webinars is free to attend for Full Individual & Corporate Members and will be hosted via Zoom Meetings.

The next webinars in this series are:

Friday 7th May 2021: 14:00 – 15:00
Internal responses to COVID and how to plan for service development and change

Wednesday 12th May 2021: 10:30 – 12:00
Understanding the impact of COVID and lockdown

Download Full Programme

Book Now

Analysis in Government Month 2021
This programme of events, talks and activities celebrates analysis work across government .

This year’s theme is Analysis Connect and the full programme of events and activities is available here.

Social Research Association (SRA) training courses

The SRA are currently offering a range of online training courses using Zoom

SRA - Social Research Practice journal
The latest issue of the SRA's free e-journal is now available.

University of Bristol – policy newsletter
This policy newsletter from the University of Bristol includes the latest policy research briefings and information on how their research relates to current affairs and legislation.

Project Oracle children and youth evidence hub
Project Oracle is a children and youth evidence hub. The latest newsletter provides a round-up of Project Oracle news, and headlines from across the sector. You can sign up to receive the regular Project Oracle newsletter.

The Rees Centre newsletter
The Rees Centre newsletter is published every two months giving an update on their fostering related research activities and events along with a book review and a section on young voices.

Child Welfare Inequalities Project (CWIP) news
The CWIP at Coventry University studies the links between deprivation and children’s chances of being unable to live safely within their birth families and also aims to establish child welfare inequalities as a core concept in policy making, practice and research. Information about current CWIP projects is available on the website.

Centre for Evaluation newsletter
The Centre for Evaluation develops interventions, systems and strategies to improve public health using rigorous evaluation methods. Visit the website to sign up for the Centre for Evaluation newsletter.

What Works Centre for Local Economic growth newsletter
This regular newsletter from the What Works Centre for Local Economic Growth provides the latest resources and evidence. Visit the website to sign up for the newsletter.

The Centre for Youth Impact newsletter
The Centre for Youth Impact is a community of organisations that work together to progress thinking and practice around impact measurement in youth work and services for young people. The latest 2020 Centre for Youth Impact newsletter is now available.

CCSA Newsletter
The CSA newsletter brings together the most up-to-date research into an accessible overview for frontline professionals and commissioners. Visit the website to sign up for the CSA newsletter.

National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) Direct
This regular NFER newsletter provides research, industry insights and free resources and events. Sign up for the newsletter here.

Economic and Social Research Coucil (ESRC) Centre for Population Change (CPC) Newsletter
The ESRC CPC is investigating how and why our population is changing and what this means for people, communities and governments. Visit the website to sign up for the CPC newsletter.

London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) Centre for Evaluation
The Centre for Evaluation aims to improve the design and conduct of evaluations of complex public health interventions through the development, application and dissemination of rigorous methods, and facilitate the use of robust evidence to inform policy and practice decisions. The Centre produce a termly newsletter.

Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) society now
This regular magazine from ESRC provides the latest social science research for key opinion formers in business, government and the voluntary sector.

Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) news alert
EEF news alerts provide information about teaching and learning toolkits, project evaluation reports, grant funding rounds and news and events.

NESTA is an innovation foundation which aims to tackle society’s big challenges. They produce a regular newsletter.

Early Intervention Foundation (EiF) newsletter
This regular newsletter from the EiF brings together research, evidence and implementation guidance to champion effective early intervention for children and young people.