In praise of POST

If you are even the slightest bit interested in science and technology policy, you really should know about the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (or POST as it’s more commonly known).

POST is the UK Parliament’s in-house office for analysis of science policy issues. Obviously it could do a lot more than it does and there are oodles of problems with it, yadda, yadda, yadda, but it’s Friday and I think they’re worthy of a little celebration.

About 20-30 times a year they publish briefing notes on specific issues. These vary, but can be brilliantly clear introductions to the often highly complex, multi-disciplinary and uncertain issues of science and technology policy. They’ve just published their 400th POSTnote, on climate variability and weather. These are often produced by young scientists on a placement and according to the POST twitter account, this one was produced with the assistance of Matt Ashfold, a NERC funded PhD student from Cambridge.

The whole archive of POSTnotes is worth a look though. A great resource and, for science policy geeks, a great way to loose a few hours on a cold afternoon.

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