POST is a bicameral body that bridges research and policy. One of our key activities is writing short, impartial, and accessible evidence syntheses. These briefings, commonly known as POSTnotes, tackle a range of topics in science, technology and the social sciences. POSTnotes are designed for Members of Parliament. But they are also used by many other stakeholders, such as government, the media and the third sector. To make sure they are comprehensive and balanced, we need insights from the expert community. This includes experts from academia, industry, government, the third sector and beyond. Could that be you?

How to contribute to POSTnote

1. Suggest a topic

You can suggest a topic for a POSTnote by email. Your suggestion should be on an emerging topic that will have future public policy impact. See our latest POSTnotes to get an idea of what we’re looking for. Topic suggestions will be passed on to the relevant POST adviser, and will inform their thinking when proposing potential topics to the POST Board.

2. Contribute to a POSTnote in production:

You can view all the POSTnotes we are planning on publishing in our work programme. Here you will find work start dates and author contact details, along with a short scope for each project. To contribute to a POSTnote, you can contact the listed author. In a short email, describe your expertise: include your PhD studies, any grants you’ve been awarded, or any advisory committees you are on, and don’t forget to add any conflict of interest you might have. If you like you can suggest some key literature on the topic. It can also be useful to know if you’ve engaged with the UK Parliament before, by submitting evidence to a Committee inquiry for example. The author may ask to interview you, or for you to externally review a draft of the POSTnote once it is written. Stay up to date with opportunities to contribute by subscribing to newsletter.

Getting interviewed as a stakeholder

If you have expertise that we need, the author of the POSTnote will send you a one-page document outlining the context and scope of the briefing. They may also arrange an interview. During this interview, the author will have prepared some questions to ask, but will also be interested in other information you can supply on the topic. They may ask what aspects of the topic you think are particularly important for policymakers and if there are other experts you would recommend they speak to. Afterwards, the author will send you the interview notes to check for accuracy.

Reviewing a POSTnote

You may also be asked to peer review a draft of a POSTnote for which you were interviewed, or a POSTnote on a topic related to your expertise. POSTnotes get reviewed by 15 to 20 external experts who are usually given two weeks to provide feedback. The author will incorporate comments but will make sure to balance them against those from other reviewers.

Why contribute to a POSTnote?

POSTnotes are used by Members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords and UK Parliament staff to navigate complex research. Contributing to a POSTnote is a good way of feeding your research into the UK Parliament as part of a trusted, impartial publication. All contributors are acknowledged online when the POSTnote is published. On publication, you and your organisation’s communications team will be notified to publicize the POSTnote and your contribution. Therefore your contribution can help raise your profile and promote your research. Contributing to a POSTnote may lead to research impact as understood in the context of REF2021.  The REF2021 Panel Criteria and Working Methods include examples of parliamentary impact and how it may be evidenced.  Here is more information specifically on types of parliamentary impact and ways to evidence this. If you have any queries about POST or POSTnotes please contact us.