How racial biases can influence outcomes in the criminal justice system

By Rachel Hesketh

Last week David Lammy MP published his independent review into the treatment of, and outcomes for, Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) individuals in the criminal justice system (CJS). His findings on the extent of disproportionality in the CJS are sobering: England and Wales would have 9,000 fewer prisoners (the equivalent of 12 average-sized prisons) if the prison population was representative of the ethnic composition of the two countries. The overrepresentation of Black people in prisons here is actually greater than in the US. Continue reading

If we want young people to contribute more to society, maybe we should try asking their opinion

By Alma Grant, Helen Murphy and Saba Hinrichs-Krapels

Alma Grant and Helen Murphy recently completed a week’s work experience at the Policy Institute.

Here at the Policy Institute we have just launched a health commission led entirely by 18 students and recent graduates of King’s College London. The commission is funded by NHS England and intended to envision revolutionary changes to healthcare during the next 15 years.

Clearly we thought this was a good idea (and so did our funder), but we were curious to see who else had done something similar around the world. We started to look around to find examples of young people’s involvement in the creation of public policy. We were particularly interested in finding out whether involving young people affects the success of projects. Continue reading

Weeding out the bugs in cannabis legalisation policies

As the new President-Elect was making his victory speech on 9 November last year, some liberals were rejoicing, rather than despairing, about what had just taken place at the ballot box. What they saw, sprouting among the rubble of the swing-state firewall that was meant to deliver the election for Hillary Clinton, were some very literal green shoots of progress, as four states – Massachusetts, Nevada, Maine and California – voted to legalise cannabis for recreational use. Continue reading

From STEM to STEAM: Lessons from biomedical and health research

Professor Jonathan Grant

This blog post is an edited version of a speech given by Professor Jonathan Grant to The Culture Capital Exchange at St George’s House in Windsor Castle for a debate on the issue of excluding arts and humanities from the UK government’s ‘STEM’ research agenda. The full speech, and those of other invited speakers can be found on the Culture Capital Exchange website.
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Policy Idol finalist Bakht Baryar tells his story

Bakht_PolicyIdolBakht Baryar was a final year BSc Political Economy student at King’s College London and a finalist at Policy Idol 2015.  His pitch titled “An anchor in Africa: the value of the state of Somaliland” won Bakht the award for Best Delivery at the competition.  In this blog post, to coincide with the launch of Policy Idol 2016, Bakht tells us why he decided to enter the competition and what it was like to take part.  You can read the details of Bakht’s pitch and watch his winning three minute pitch online. Continue reading