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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February 2023 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

Adult social care in England, monthly statistics: February 2023

These Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) experimental statistics on adult social care in England, cover a range of topics including infection control measures, COVID-19 vaccinations and testing for COVID-19 in adult social care settings.

Quality of life in the UK: January 2023

This Office for National Statistics (ONS) article on quality of life in the UK, provides an update on the UK's progress across ten domains of national well-being which include personal well-being, relationships, health, education and skills, and the environment.

Impact of increased cost of living on adults across Great Britain: September 2022 to January 2023

This ONS analysis provides details of the proportion of the population that are affected by an increase in their cost of living and of the characteristics associated with financial vulnerability, using data from the Opinions and Lifestyle survey.

Households below the minimum income standard 2008-2021, UK

The Minimum Income Standard (MIS) sets out what people think is needed in order to live with dignity in the UK today. This report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) provides an estimate of the proportion of people who fall below this level, and those with incomes below 75 per cent of MIS.

Public opinions and social trends, Great Britain: 25 January to 5 February 2023

This ONS article provides social insights on daily life and events in Great Britain between 25 January and 5 February, including the cost of living, working arrangements and well-being from the Opinions and Lifestyle Survey (OPN). 

Economic activity and social change in the UK, real-time indicators: January 2023

This Office for National Statistics (ONS) early experimental data and analysis provides information on economic activity and social change in the UK.

Children living with parents in emotional distress: March 2022 update, England

These Office for Health, Improvement and Disparities statistics provide information on the proportion of children in England living with at least one parent reporting symptoms of emotional distress, by family type and work status.

Health profile for England: 2021

The Public Health England (PHE) fourth annual health profile for England report  combines data and knowledge with information from other sources to give a broad picture of the health of people in England in 2021.

Strategies to reduce waiting times for elective care

The Kings Fund has conducted research to understand the strategies that have been used to reduce waiting times in England and elsewhere in the past 20 years

Dying well at home: commissioning quality end-of-life care

Increasingly, people are dying at home rather than in hospital, and this trend is set to continue. This King’s Fund report considers how care can be improved for those dying at home and provides key recommendations.

Review of poverty and social exclusion in Wales

The Wales Centre for Public Policy (WCPP) have prepared two reports on poverty and social exclusion in Wales. One report focuses on quantitative evidence, and the second focuses on secondary qualitative evidence relating to the lived experience of poverty and social exclusion.

Innovation sweet spots: Food innovation, obesity and food environments

This Nesta report brings together insights into forthcoming food innovations and examines what government and industry could do to encourage food innovation that benefits our health. 

Public Health Intervention Responsive Studies Teams (PHIRST) South Gloucestershire evaluation video

This short video provides the findings of the PHIRST Fusion evaluation of the South Gloucestershire COVID-19 emergency travel schemes.

Education and young people

Pupil attendance in schools - 12 September 2022 to 27 January 2023, England

This DfE data provides information on the levels of attendance and overall, authorised and unauthorised absence in state-funded primary, secondary and special schools in England between 12 September and 27 January 2023.                                                                                  

State of the nation 2022: children and young people’s wellbeing – 2021/22 academic year,  England

This DfE report analyses published evidence about the wellbeing of children and young people in England, over the academic year from September 2021 to July 2022.


Annual bus statistics: year ending March 2022, Great Britain

These Department for Transport (DfT) local bus statistics provide information on passengers, mileage and vehicle fleet in Great Britain for the year ending March 2022.

Rail statistics overview – to March 2022, Great Britain

This DfT factsheet provides an overview of key statistics on rail in Great Britain including passenger usage, performance and complaints. Statistics are for surface rail only and do not include underground, light rail and tram systems.

Quarterly bus fares statistics: July to September 2022, Great Britain

These DfT statistics provide information on local bus fares in Great Britain for July to September 2022.

Regional rail usage: July to September 2022, Great Britain

These Office of Rail and Road (ORR) statistics provide information on passenger journeys for each region of Great Britain, including journeys between regions, within regions and between England, Scotland and Wales.

Rail strikes: understanding the impact on passengers – 2022, England

This DfT rail strikes report presents findings from a survey investigating the impacts of strike action in 2022 on rail passengers in England


Fly tipping statistics in England, April 2021 to March 2022, England

This Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) publication provides statistics on fly-tipping incidents recorded by local authorities in England, for April 2021 to March 2022. It covers trends in the number of fly-tipping incidents, with a breakdown by land type, waste type and size.

Climate change insights: business and transport: February 2023, UK

This ONS climate change-related analysis brings together the latest UK climate-change related statistics from a range of sources.

Emissions of air pollutants – 1970 to 2021, UK

These DEFRA statistics provide an annual update to tables on emissions of important air pollutants in the UK from 1970 to 2021.

Local government

Local government finance capacity and capability study

As part of their sector support programme funded by the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), LGA commissioned Local Partnerships to undertake research into capacity and capability in local government finance. This report will support councils in understanding the pressures and challenges finance teams are facing, and the actions they can take.

LG Inform updates:

Updated LG Inform fly-tipping report

These annual fly-tipping statistics from DEFRA were published on 31 January 2023 and LG Inform has been updated with the latest data. 

Overall, there were 506,969 enforcement actions in England, which was an increase from the previous 455,467 actions in 2020/21. See the LG Inform Local Authority Reported Fly-tipping report for your area for all the details.

Metrics added to LG Inform this month include:

Business demography- England  

The ONS Business demography collection has been expanded within LG Inform. Data for 2021 shows there were 9,505 high growth enterprises in England. This is down from 10,575 in 2020. There were 243,455 active enterprises with 10 or more employees in England, the highest figure on record, up from 238,390.

Available Geographies: UK – Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District 

Bus journeys – 2021/22, England

These DfT 2021/22 statistics show that in England the number of passenger journeys on local bus services was 2,839 million, up from 1,581 million in 2020/21, but still significantly down on 4,072 million journeys in 2019/21. There were 99.6 million local authority supported bus miles (excluding London).

Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – Unitary  

Active Lives Survey – 2021/22, England

Sport England’s Children and Young People Active Lives Survey has been added to LG Inform. 91.6 per cent of children aged 5 to 16 in England participated in an activity once a week or more in 2021/22. 30.1 per cent of children are less active
(less than 30 minutes of at least moderate intensity a day). The percentage of children who are active for an average of 30 plus minutes a day, outside of school hours is 55.1 per cent. 69.8 per cent of children participated in sporting activities, during school hours once a week and 71.6 per cent outside school hours. 

Available Geographies: Country – Region – County – London borough – Metropolitan District – Unitary – District 

Employment, pay and workforce

2022 local government workforce survey, England

The 2022 LGA local government workforce survey provides information on key elements of the workforce within local authorities in England. All data in this report refers to the 2021/2022 financial year unless otherwise stated.

County Councils Network (CCN) council tax research

This research from CCN has found that 84 councils out of 114 who have so far published their 2023/34 budget proposals plan to raise council tax by the maximum permitted which is 4.99 per cent. These are upper-tier councils with social care responsibilities.

Missing workers – understanding trends in economic inactivity

This research from the Learning and Work Institute suggests that the UK has seen the biggest rise in people leaving the labour force of G7 countries through the pandemic.

Labour market value of higher and further education qualifications: a summary report

This publication from the Social Mobility Commission provides evidence and analysis of young people's earnings after studying for qualifications in higher or further education.

Characteristics of homeworkers: September 2022 to January 2023, Great Britain

This ONS publication provides an analysis of homeworkers in Great Britain, including the prevalence of hybrid working and breakdowns by personal characteristics.

UK labour market overview: October to December 2022

This ONS UK labour market overview provides estimates of employment, unemployment, inactivity, average weekly earnings, vacancies and other labour market related statistics for the UK during October to December 2022.

Labour market in the regions of the UK: October to December 2022

These ONS regional labour market statistics provide information on regional, local authority and parliamentary constituency breakdowns of changes in UK employment, unemployment and economic activity between October and December 2022.

Labour market analysis February 2023

The Learning and Work Institute have released their latest labour market analysis for February 2023.


Retail sales, Great Britain: January 2023 time series

This ONS data provides a first estimate of retail sales in value and volume terms for Great Britain, seasonally and non-seasonally adjusted.

UK overseas trade in goods statistics: December 2022: import and export data

These HM Revenue and Customs UK overseas trade in goods statistics provide details of EU and Non-EU import and export data for December 2022.

UK overseas trade in goods statistics: December 2022

These HM Revenue and Customs UK overseas trade statistics provide information on international trade in goods at summary product and country level. For December 2022.

UK trade: December 2022

These ONS UK trade statistics provide information on the total value of UK exports and imports of goods and services by current price, chained volume measures and implied deflators in December 2022.

Forecasts for the UK economy: February 2023

This HM Treasury report provides a comparison of independent forecasts for the UK economy in February 2023.


Damp and mould in social housing: Initial findings, England

This summary report from the Regulator of Social Housing provides initial findings about the extent of damp and mould issues in homes owned by large registered social housing providers.


Knife and offensive weapon sentencing statistics: July to September 2022, England and Wales

These Ministry of Justice (MoJ) statistics provide information on trends in cautioning and sentencing of knife and offensive weapon offences between July and September 2022.

Criminal justice system statistics quarterly: England and Wales, July to September 2022

These MoJ criminal justice system statistics provide an overview of trends in the use of out of court disposals, defendants prosecuted, offenders convicted, remand and sentencing decisions in England and Wales for July to September 2022.

Prison population figures: England and Wales, 24 February 2023  

These MoJ prison population figures provide the latest data for England and Wales as at 24 February 2023.

Child sexual abuse in 2021/22: Trends in official data – England and Wales

This Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) report brings together available data from children’s social care, policing, criminal justice and health, to build a picture of how agencies identify and respond to child sexual abuse and provides an insight into the changing trends in practice.

Regular publications and events

Digital Showcase Conference 2023: Spotlight on local government digitalisation outcomes; Tuesday 21 March 2023, 10.00am-4.45pm

This all day showcase will spotlight some of the innovative work councils are undertaking across 12 digitalisation outcomes which include, data, connectivity, organisational capability and more. Confirmed case studies include iStandUK’s Scalable Approach to Vulnerability via Interoperability project which will explore their approach to applying data standards, data sharing, and information governance, to support vulnerable residents through early interventions and referrals. LGA will also launch a brand-new digitalisation almanac for local government which contains simple steps, practical examples and recommended reading to support those new to local government digitalisation and those looking to build on their existing knowledge. For further information including how to register, please visit the event page.

Data and managing council performance  introductory training for councillors

Friday 24 March, 10.00am12.30pm, Microsoft Teams
The LGA is running a free introductory training session for councillors on data and the role it plays in managing council performance. The programme has been developed in association with King's College London.

The course will cover the following topics:

•  what is data?
•  common ways in which data is analysed and presented
•  key questions to ask of our data
•  performance management – measuring what matters.

If you are an officer and think that councillors you work with could benefit from this, please do pass the information on. If you are a councillor, you can find out more, including how to sign up, on the website.

For more details, contact transparency@local.gov.uk.

LG Inform and LG Inform Plus webinar programme – March to April 2023

The LG Inform and LG Inform Plus programme of free webinars for the March to April 2023 period is available.

To book a place and discover more about the data, report writing and the various modules on offer visit the online training page for more details and how to book.

If you would like something more tailored to your needs, contact lginformplus@local.gov.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 SRA's free e-journal is now available.

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.

Changing Populations newsletter

The latest newsletter from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Centre for Population Change is now available.

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.

NIHR School for Public Health Research

Sign-up to receive the latest news and updates from the NIHR School for Public Research including publications, funding opportunities, upcoming events and more. Read the last NIHR newsletter

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 What Works 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 Centre for Youth Impact newsletter is now available.

The 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 NFER 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 WCPP 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 NESTA 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 REAL updates.

Policy Bristol Newsletter

The Policy Bristol Newsletter provides regular policy updates and the latest policy research and events news.

Centre for Population Change (CPC) newsletter

The CPC newsletter outlines activities and news from the Centre.

ActEarly monthly bulletin

The AntennAE monthly e-bulletin provides the latest news and developments from Act Early.