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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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.

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September 2021 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.

Health and social care

Health Determinants Research Collaborations (HDRC) launch

The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is offering funding to enable local authorities to become research active.  It is calling for Expressions of Interest (EoI) from local authorities wanting to develop Health Determinants Research Collaborations (HDRCs). Funding of £5m over five years is available for each of five UK local authorities. The funding is for the research infrastructure that will enable the local authority to attract research funding, use and undertake public health research across the breadth of its functions. EoIs need to be submitted no later than 23 November 2021. Workshops are being held in October and the recording of a previous webinar is available on request from phr@nihr.ac.uk.

Coronavirus and the impact on household finances and living standards

This Office for National Statistics (ONS) publication provides analysis of the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on household and individuals' financial health and considers changes in spending, income and economic well-being.

The health of people from ethnic minority groups in England

This long read from The Kings Fund  examines the ethnic differences in health outcomes in England and highlights variation across ethnic groups and health conditions, and also considers what is  needed to reduce health inequalities.

The health impacts of Sure Start

This Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) report builds on and updates previous research evaluating the impact of Sure Start on children’s health as measured by hospitalisations.

Waiting for care: Understanding the pandemic's effects on people's health and quality of life

This analysis from The Health foundation suggests that the effects of the pandemic should not be measured only by  mortality. The suspension of routine NHS care has affected people’s health and wellbeing – with the significance of this depending on the type of condition or treatment delayed.

Directors of public health (DsPH) and the COVID-19 pandemic: ‘A year like no other’

This report from The King’s Fund is based around 58 interviews with DsPH and other leaders working at local, regional and national levels. The report highlights key learning from their experiences in leading the local response to COVID-19.

 Volunteering and wellbeing in the pandemic: learning from practice

This article from Wales Centre for Public Policy (WCPP) considers the evidence base on how volunteering has supported wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Identifying and responding to child sexual abuse within complex safeguarding approaches

This small-scale exploratory study from the Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) considers how child sexual abuse is identified and responded to within complex safeguarding approaches.

Resident-to-resident harm in care homes and other residential settings: a scoping review

This report from the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) explores resident-to-resident harm in care homes.

Education and young people

NHS Digital survey on Smoking Drinking and Drug Use among young people in England

NHS Digital is calling on selected secondary schools across England to take part in a statistical survey that will measure the use of alcohol, nicotine and drugs in young people. The study will help to identify some of the ways in which the pandemic has affected 11-15 year olds’ health behaviours. Its findings are used by local authorities, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), the Home Office, and the Department for Education (DfE), as well as charities and academic researchers. Researchers at Ipsos MORI are currently contacting schools to ask them to participate in the study during the autumn term of 2021. Please encourage schools in your local authority to participate. For more information, visit the Ipsos MORI website or contact Jamie Roberts on 080 8101 2066 or via email SDDsurvey@ipsos.com.

Recovery during a pandemic: The ongoing impacts of COVID-19 on schools serving deprived communities

This National Foundation for Educational Research (NfER) report expands on the findings from an interim report  published in July 2021. The report covers three main areas; recovering teaching and learning, recovering wellbeing and mental health and recovering opportunity: educational transitions.

A fair start? Equalising access to early education

This report from The Sutton Trust considers access inequalities in the 30 hours early education and childcare entitlement.

Changing patterns of poverty in early childhood

The Nuffield Foundation has published a evidence review, to explore trends in the causes, patterns and solutions to early childhood poverty.

Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak: 23 March 2020 to 16 September 2021 – England

These DfE statistics provide a summary of attendance in education settings up to 16 September 2021 in England.


Transport use during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Great Britain from March 2020 to September 2021

These Department for Transport (DfT) statistics provide information on transport use by mode in Great Britain between March 2020 and September 2021.

Attitudes towards COVID-19 among passengers arriving into the UK: February to July 2021

These monthly ONS figures provide information on the attitudes of UK and overseas residents arriving into the UK towards social distancing, mask wearing, and coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions and the proportion who have been vaccinated, using unweighted results from the International Passenger Survey, February to July 2021 (experimental statistics).

Reported road casualties in Great Britain, final estimates involving illegal alcohol levels: 2019

These DfT statistics provide final estimates on personal injury drink drive accidents in Great Britain for the 2019 calendar year.

Quarterly bus statistics: April to June 2021- Great Britain

This DfT quarterly release covers local bus passenger journeys and fares statistics in Great Britain for April to June 2021.

Vehicle speed compliance statistics for Great Britain: April to June 2021

These DfT statistics provide information on car driver compliance with speed limits on roads in Great Britain for April to June 2021.

Provisional road traffic estimates, Great Britain: July 2020 to June 2021

These DfT statistics provide provisional estimates for road traffic in Great Britain for the year ending June 2021, by vehicle type and road class.

Walking and cycling statistics, England: 2020 

These DfT walking and cycling statistics in England for 2020, include the proportion of adults participating by local authority level.

Transport: disability and accessibility statistics, England: 2020

This DfT statistical release presents information on transport related disability and accessibility statistics in England.

The National Travel Survey (NTS) 2020 - England

This household survey of personal travel by residents of England travelling within Great Britain in 2020 provides data collected via interviews and a seven-day travel diary, which enables analysis of patterns and trends.


Waste electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) in the UK – Quarter two, 2021

This Environment Agency report provides information on the amount of new electrical and electronic equipment (EEE) placed on the market and WEEE collected in the UK under the WEEE Regulations for Quarter two, 2021 in the UK

Recycling research

The Royal Society of Chemistry brings together the chemistry community on some of the global challenges of our time. As part of their recent policy work they have been investigating plastic waste, and these explainers look at some of the questions around this important issue, with the latest set exploring the science behind plastic recycling.

Local authority green belt statistics for England: 31 March 2020 to 31 March 2021

These statistics from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), provide information on land designated as green belt in England by local authority between March 2020 and March 2021.

Local government

Solace/LGA Emergency Coaching and Mentoring Support Programme Evaluation - June 2021

In April 2020, Solace and the LGA launched an Emergency Coaching and Mentoring Support Programme for those leading the response to the COVID-19 pandemic across local government in England. The programme was specifically aimed at chief executives, directors and professional leads working directly on managing the response to COVID-19. The evaluation is now available.

LG Inform updates

New LG Inform Report: Local Government & Social Care Ombudsman complaint reviews

A new LG Inform report with local authority statistics from the Local Government & Social Care Ombudsman on annual complaints, decisions, uphold rates, remedy and compliance outcomes is now available.

You can view the report here and change it to show your area, using the modifiers at the top.

To allow authorities to respond to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Ombudsman did not accept new complaints and stopped investigating existing cases between March and June 2020. This reduced the number of complaints it received and decided in the 2020-21 year. Please consider this when comparing data from previous years.

Metrics added to LG Inform this month include:

Total number of individual insolvencies in England - 2020 
The total number of individual insolvencies in England in 2020 was 74,039 an increase of 558 from 73,481 in 2019. This is the sum of total individual insolvencies, bankruptcies, debt relief orders (DROs) and individual voluntary arrangements (IVAs) at region, county, unitary authority and local authority levels.
Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District –Unitary – District 
Total Insolvencies - LGI 

Finished hospital admissions episodes with obesity, admissions where obesity was a factor, and admissions for obesity involving a 'Bariatric Surgery' 
In England, the rate of NHS finished hospital admission episodes with a primary diagnosis of obesity per 100,000 female population was 29 in 2019/20. This compares to ten per 100,000 male population. 
Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary
Obesity NHS hospital admissions 

5th grant under the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
The HM revenue and Customs (HMRC) 5th SEISS grant which runs between July to September and includes a higher and lower grant is now available. The initial take-up rate is 24 per cent in England. 
Available Geographies: UK – Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District – Parliamentary constituency
Percentage take-up rate SEISS 5th grant  

Children looked after Up to date immunisations, Health assessments, and Teeth checks percentages
Three DfE Children looked after health outcome percentages are now available. In England, 88 per cent were up to date with immunisations, 90 per cent had their annual health assessment, and 86 per cent had their teeth checked by a dentist, in 2019/20. 
Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary 
Percentage of children looked after with up to date immunisations in England 

Average upload speed (Mbit/s) 
Three Office of Communications (OFCOM) average upload speed figures are now available, including Superfast Broadband and Ultrafast Broadband. In 2020, the mean value for upload speeds was 13.1 Mbit/s for all English single tier and district authorities. 
Available Geographies: London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District 
Average upload speed (Mbit/s) | LG Inform (local.gov.uk) 

Employment, pay and workforce

Why go back to the office?

This from Wales Centre for Public Policy (WCPP)article asks what the office offers that home working can’t.

Access to Work statistics: April 2007 to March 2021

These Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) experimental statistics provide information on the approval and payment of Access to Work provision between April 2007 and March 2021 in England, Scotland and Wales.


Statistical digest of rural England – August 2021 Edition

This publication from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) is a collection of statistics on a range of social and economic subject areas. The statistics are split by rural and urban areas, allowing for comparisons between the different rural and urban area classifications.


Statutory homelessness in England: financial year 2020-21

These Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) statistics provide information on statutory homelessness in England for the 2020-21 financial year..


Exploring the nature of extremism in three prisons: findings from qualitative research - England

This Ministry of Justice (MoJ) report presents findings from a qualitative study, which aimed to explore the nature of extremism in three high security prisons in England.

The challenges and needs of people serving long life sentences from a young age

This evidence review from CLINKS provides an in-depth look at the specific challenges and needs of the significant number of people already serving long life sentences from a young age in England and Wales.

Regular publications and events

New funding opportunity awarding up to £10 million on ‘Transforming care and health at home and enabling independence’ with funding from both the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and NIHR.

The primary aim of this call is to enable people to transform their care and health and be more independent.

This means focusing on:

  • staying independent at home
  • staying healthy at home
  • making care easier through building design and technologies
  • using and developing new tools and collecting data to help with decisions on housing and care.

Three different grants will be awarded under this call. These will be in the form of:

  • NetworkPlus grants, to create multidisciplinary networks: less than £1.5 million
  • Research grants, to stimulate research already in the pipeline, or encourage the development of a strong evidence base in these areas: at least £500,000
  • Small grants, or pilot or feasibility research studies to support the synthesis, dissemination or mobilisation of existing evidence: up to £499,999.

Full details of the call can be found on the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) Funding Finder 

All applications must submit an Expression of Interest by 16:00 on 7 October 2021 to be considered for this call.

Take the next step in developing your career with NIHR

NIHR is providing opportunities for individuals working in local authority settings to undertake short placements/taster opportunities to develop skills and research collaborations. The placements include funding of up to £15,000 per individual and offer the chance to experience research within an NIHR setting such as an NIHR Applied Research Collaboration (ARC). Find out more about the NIHR Local Authority Short Placement Award for Research Collaboration.

Local Area Research and Intelligence Association (LARIA) autumn webinar series - call for presentations

LARIA's autumn webinar series aims to bring together what analysts and researchers, have done and learnt during the pandemic and how we will apply this to the social, economic and environmental needs of our local areas. This call for presentations invites you to submit your work that you would want to share with other LARIA members.

For full details and to submit a presentation please download the submission form and return to admin@laria.org.uk

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.

NESTA Online events
NESTA are running a series of free online events during June.

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.

Government Actuary Department (GAD) eNewsletter
The latest issue of the GAD eNewsletter is now available.

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.

Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) 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.

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.

Wales Centre for Public Policy (WCPP) newsletter
WCPP works to address key economic and societal challenges through the use of evidence and produce a regular newsletter.

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.

Research and Economic Analysis for the Long Term (REAL) Centre
The Health Foundation’s REAL Centre was set up to support long-term decision making in health and social care. Visit the website to sign up for regular updates.