• POSTnote

    Genome edited food crops

    Genome editing creates the possibility of making more precise alterations in the DNA of food crop plants than existing approaches. This POSTnote: describes genome editing technology; identifies which food crops are currently undergoing editing and why; describes the regulation and registration of genome-edited food crops; discusses issues around trade; and describes stakeholder views about the technology.

  • POSTnote

    Preventing emerging zoonoses

    Zoonoses are diseases that can be transmitted between animals and humans. This POSTnote summarises approaches to preventing zoonoses with pandemic potential by targeting animal-environment-human interactions. It reviews current biosecurity measures in the UK and globally, notes lessons from COVID-19 and identifies future strategies.

  • POSTnote

    Conversion Therapy

    The UK Government intends to prepare legislation in the new year to ban ‘conversion therapy’ (CT) in England and Wales, for introduction when parliamentary time allows. This POSTnote outlines data on CT and reviews the quality of available research evidence and the impact of CT. It summarises UK stakeholder perspectives on a CT ban and outlines key challenges for policymakers to consider.

  • Rapid response

    COVID-19: The Omicron Variant

    The Omicron variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which causes COVID-19, has been found across the world since it was first detected in early November 2021. This article describes the characteristics of the variant, why scientists are concerned, and the possible impact that it might have on the course of the pandemic.

  • POSTnote

    Advances in vaccine technologies

    This POSTnote provides an overview of vaccine development and technologies. It also covers opportunities and challenges to vaccine discovery and manufacture, as well as policy approaches to stimulate vaccine research and development (R&D) in the UK.

  • POSTnote

    Smart Cities

    "Smart cities" describes places that incorporate a range of technologies (especially those that collect and use data) to address economic, social, and environmental challenges. Projects usually take place in urban areas, but are also deployed in rural settings. This POSTnote looks at smart city innovation in the UK and the technologies involved. It considers the factors driving the adoption of smart city technologies, and the potential benefits, barriers and risks associated with their implementation.

  • POSTnote

    Children’s Mental Health and the COVID-19 Pandemic

    A POSTnote describing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children's mental health. This briefing summarises the latest understanding from research about the effects on children throughout the pandemic, and the factors that increase vulnerability to poor mental health. It also reviews policy approaches that seek to protect children's mental health, with particular focus on recent initiatives to address this.

  • POSTnote

    Early Childhood Education and Care

    Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) refers to education and childcare provided in regulated settings from birth to the start of primary school. This POSTnote summarises the evidence on the association between ECEC and children’s development in England and the key factors that affect this. It also covers the impact of government-funded ECEC places on families and the sector, and stakeholder perspectives on public policy priorities.

  • Rapid response

    Immunising children against COVID-19

    As the UK COVID-19 immunisation programme reaches all adults, the Government has announced an update to its policy on using a COVID-19 vaccine in children. So, how does COVID-19 affect children? What will the impact of vaccinating children be on preventing disease and minimising associated risks? And what do we know about public attitudes to using COVID-19 vaccines in children?

  • POSTnote

    Mental health impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on adults

    The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is a significant public health concern, with a growing body of research describing the effects on the population since March 2020. This POSTnote summarises the key findings from research, highlights the groups most affected and their mental health outcomes, and the limitations of current knowledge. It also discusses policy approaches to protect mental health and how healthcare services can adapt to improve outcomes.

  • Rapid response

    COVID-19 vaccine coverage and targeted interventions to improve vaccination uptake

    The COVID-19 vaccination programme launched in January 2021. All adults over 18 have now been offered the vaccine, although it was reported that 1.3 million people who had been offered a vaccine had not received it. Some people are vaccine hesitant whilst others experience barriers to accessing vaccines. Targeted interventions have been promoted locally and nationally to improve vaccine uptake.