Research – Work themes

This page contains links to recent Local Government Association (LGA) Research and Information sponsored projects. These are primarily produced and published electronically and can be downloaded as PDF documents.

Crime and disorder/ Safer communities

As well as representing communities on issues such as licensing, crime and disorder, anti-social behaviour and community safety, councils are also responsible for delivering high standard services such as public protection, health and safety and regulatory services.


The Local Government Education and Children's Services Research Programme is designed to contribute to the development of local authorities and schools through its work with the LGA. 


The LGA and central bodies are working closely with a range of agencies to explore the challenges ahead and to ensure that local authorities receive the support they need. View this section for the latest publications in this area.

Geographic information

Geographic Information is a powerful but underused tool to aid the formulation of effective strategy, the design and management effective service delivery, and in monitoring and evaluating performance. View this section for the latest work in this area.


The local authority role in relation to housing is undergoing significant change. Many no longer directly provide council homes having instead chosen to either transfer their stock to housing associations or let other organisations manage it on their behalf. Authorities continue to play a pivotal role in assessing local housing requirements.

Local government finance 

The 2007 Comprehensive Spending Review set the spending envelope for 2010/11, set a zero-based approach to assessing the effectiveness of departments' existing spending. The challenge is to ensure that Government provides sufficient resources to fund local and national pressures on local government.

Local government pay and workforce

The LGA has been working hard to produce robust and useful data to support local authorities in developing the flexible, skilled workforce they need to meet future challenges. At the same time we are working with partners to minimise the burden of data collection centrally and improve the quality of workforce data locally.

Performance and improvement

The LGA welcomed the positive steps made by Government to dismantle much of the performance management framework for local government. We continue to campaign for the reduction of central performance reporting in favour of sector self-regulation, transparency and local accountability. This section will contain the latest publications in this area.

Population and migration

By commissioning research and encouraging debate through workshops and conferences, we are developing a local government proposition for medium and longer term strategies to get better nationally accredited local population estimates which can take account of the rapid changes brought about through international migration. 

Social care

The 'Our health, our care, our say' Health White Paper sets out a vision to provide people with good quality social care and NHS services in the communities where they live. View this section for the latest research publications in this area as well as other health and social care related publications..

Other themes

Local Government services and experience are varied and widespread. Reports and surveys here examine this diversity and breadth.