Starting today, we’re publishing a series of blog posts based on Key Issues 2017 (PDF 2.21 MB).

Key Issues is our landmark publication for the beginning of a new Parliament – something we’ve done since 2010. It’s a concise guide to the topics that we expect to take centre stage in UK and international politics in the coming months and years – although clearly things will change. The purpose of Key Issues is to get the reader up to speed on a topic in only five minutes.

How did we choose the ‘key’ issues?

Some issues were obvious. An overview of Brexit, and shorter pieces on how it might impact on the economy, the environment and trade were obviously going to be important. The profile of our regular enquiries from MPs on housing, welfare and school funding meant they were obvious inclusions. Other, newer, issues came up too: automation and the workforce, cybercrime and security, and employment rights in the so called gig economy.

The full publication itself was written during dissolution. The chapter on ‘Governing the UK’ still stands after the hung Parliament result – but with negotiations starting today, things could of course evolve fast. And the article on the challenges of countering extremism has been brought into sharper focus by the recent tragic events in Manchester, London Bridge and now, as I write, Finsbury Park.

So as MPs get to work scrutinising the work of government and representing their constituents, we hope that Key Issues is a helpful not just for MPs’ work, but for anyone interested in the facts underlying the political issues of our time.

You can download the full guide (PDF 2.21 MB), and look out for posts on this blog today and in the weeks ahead.