Policy Papers

Lessons from Covid-19: Improving Policy Communication

Covid-19 has demonstrated the importance of effective policy communication and the significant role it plays in times of crisis. This brief looks at what makes good policy communication and provides a series of recommendations for both the Scottish and British Governments. If implemented, these will lead to more efficient and clear communication in future crises.

2022

Other

Improving Supply Chains: An Opportunity for Growth at the University of Edinburgh

As part of Buchanan's Summer Research Programme, a team dives into the University’s sustainability plans, how it manages its supply chains and how it works with the local community as an anchor institution. The brief lays out the current policies in place by the SRS department and how the University was affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

2021

University of Edinburgh, Sustainability

The Shadow Pandemic

Popular discourse on the COVID-19 pandemic has often omitted the serious rise in domestic violence that came with the advice to ‘stay at home’ leading to increased potential for harm within the home, and far less opportunity to escape to safety.

2021

Health

The Scottish Just Transition

Scotland has committed to reaching net-zero carbon by 2045. To achieve this goal,
large numbers of green jobs will need to be created. Our vision is a larger and more adaptable Green Jobs Fund, and the tailoring of economic development schemes to specific regional demands, in line with the Just Transition.

2021

Sustainability, Employment

The University of Edinburgh's Response to Asian Hate on Campus

The Covid-19 pandemic has reinvigorated existing sinophobic sentiments worldwide and
led to an alarming spike in violent hate crimes towards those of East and South-East Asian
(E/SEA) descent. This paper
therefore recommends more intensive training for all staff members alike, particularly
Personal Tutors; mandatory talks regarding our zero tolerance towards racial abuse and
discrimination during Welcome Week for Freshers; more visibility online and on campus for resources and support; and a stronger centralised policy system that is made aware by students
alike.

2021

University of Edinburgh

Tackling Childhood Obesity in Scotland

In Scotland, 26% of children are overweight, with 16% at risk of obesity. These policy recommendations will help to improve on the current shortfall of the means tested system of testing free school meals after P3, as well as improving fruit and vegetable intake.

2021

Health

Democratizing Food Sustainability in Edinburgh

This policy brief seeks to tackle our current disconnect towards sustainable food systems that hinders the societal transformation necessary for a liveable future. Through the lens of democratisation, we examine how Edinburgh can develop a socially just and environmentally sustainable food system predicated on equitable access to and active community participation in our city’s local food networks and initiatives.

2022

Sustainability

The Democratic Implications of Social Media

Digital technology has many benefits to society, but it can have negative implications on democracy. There is a need for legislation restricting the production of political disinformation during political campaigns.

2020

Other

The Forgotten Generation

The youth have been severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic through impacts on the hospitality sector and the switch to online learning. Rising levels of long-term youth unemployment and inequalities should be addressed by the government.

2021

Health, Employment

Towards a Better Student Democracy

There is currently a lack of engagement with the student motion system (SMS) at the
University of Edinburgh, both in terms of proposing motions and voting on them. We suggest that
through increasing student participation our proposals will improve the democratic legitimacy of the SMS and mean the SMS is better suited to achieving policy outcomes that benefit the
student population at large.

2021

University of Edinburgh

Proposal for the Decolonisation of the Scottish History Curriculum

There is currently a cultural deficit in the equitable representation of British colonial history
within the Scottish national curriculum. As a result, the Buchanan Institute’s Education Policy Team has called for a decolonial lens to be applied to the compulsory History curriculum in Scottish secondary education.

2021

Education

Overcoming the Implementation Challenges of Universal Basic Income

Universal Basic Income (UBI) has gained popularity in recent decades as a possible solution to problems arising from changing labour relationships, technological automation, and increasing economic inequality. Despite considerable advocation, scholarship has largely neglected to identify that such a policy will carry certain implementation challenges that differ from existing social assistance programmes.

2020

Economy