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Edge Hill students help inform Parliamentary inquiries on careers services and public transport

Publish date: August 10, 2022

Students from Edge Hill University’s ‘Politics Lab’ are helping shape policy on public transport and careers services in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords.

They have done this by carrying out research and sending in evidence to two of Parliament’s Select Committees.

In the Commons, the Education Committee is holding an inquiry on the effectiveness of careers advice given to young people, while the Lords’ Built Environment Committee is assessing public transport travel trends in towns and cities across the UK.

Students studying politics and other degrees have been working in the ‘Politics Lab’ to submit written evidence to both inquiries.

Programme Lead for Politics, Paula Keaveney, said: “The work the students did on these submissions gave them valuable experience and is part of our approach to provide as much real-world experience as possible. 

“Their submissions will be considered as the inquiries progress and will help shape the findings of the Education Committee and the Built Environment Committee.

“Students really gain from looking into a topic and learning how the research they have done could influence policy is an important lesson which will inform their future work. There is no substitute for this.”

“Our Politics Lab will continue actively seeking-out opportunities for students to find ways to contribute to real-world politics and policy-making”

Paula Keaveney

Research team Lewis Melville, Alex Woodhead and Alessandro Dematteis surveyed students and also interviewed Edge Hill Careers Adviser Emma Bonati, to build an understanding of the effectiveness of the careers service, as well as to discover student opinion on their recent experiences.

They found that 55% of students felt the government doesn’t put enough importance on careers services, with more than 85% calling for additional funding.

The inquiry will be a root and branch review of how well the current system for careers education, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) is working.

It will also look at how arrangements for CEIAG could better support disadvantaged or left-behind groups to access career opportunities that may otherwise not be available to them.

Meanwhile, a second group of students submitted a report responding to the House of Lords Built Environment Committee’s call for evidence.

Thomas Jones, Anthony Walker, Jack Firmstone and Natasha Murphy surveyed young people using public transport in North West England and found people who use public transport are usually unsatisfied with their experiences.

More than 84% of people who responded to the survey said price was the main barrier stopping them from using public transport more frequently.

Other issues included waiting times, lack of infrastructure and poor communication.

The report found that people are willing to use public transport as a sustainable way of travel for the long term benefits it can provide if issues are addressed.

The inquiry will assess public transport travel trends in towns and cities. It will consider the impact of technological and digital developments on travel behaviours, future trends in public transport innovation and how public policy may be shaped in light of these trends.

To discover more about our courses, please visit ehu.ac.uk/study

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