History & Policy papers are written by expert historians, based on peer-reviewed research. They offer historical insights into current policy issues ranging from Afghanistan and Iraq, climate change and internet surveillance to family dynamics, alcohol consumption and health reforms. For historians interested in submitting a paper, please see the editorial guidelines.
Currently, 249 papers are freely searchable by theme, author or keyword, with new papers published regularly. Where possible, we publish papers to coincide with relevant policy developments. If you are a policy maker, civil society practitioner or journalist and would like to contact one of our historians, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can download H&P policy papers directly from the Apple iBooks store to your iPhone, iPad or Mac. We also have an Amazon Kindle version to download to your PC for transfer to your Kindle via USB cable. Please consult your Kindle manual for further details.
The out-dated notion of the "madness of crowds" persists in modern commentary on protest. Historians working on the People of 1381 project show how investigating historic protestors and their motives can strengthen policy and policing response today.
A recent high profile case highlights the controversial history of defences for murder, says Adrian Williamson
Historically the prison system was designed with male prisoners in mind. A landmark enquiry in 1919 laid down the first recommendations for addressing the needs of pregnant women in prison. A century on, the basic requirement that all babies and pregnant women should receive consistent high quality care remains unmet in many ways.
Tamar Herzog reflects on the stories societies tell about their legal systems - stories of continuity, revolution and exceptionalism - and on the intertwined history of English and European law.
Ben Jarman explores the history of child welfare in the youth justice system to show that overall culture is as important as specific safeguards - a modern emphasis on policy compliance may come at the expense of questioning policy effectiveness.
With new rules on the physical restraint of young offenders coming into force this week, Abigail Wills of Brasenose College, Oxford, argues that the government's approach to juvenile justice is the most punitive for 150 years. In her History & Policy paper she explodes the twin myths that there was a golden age of respect and deference, and that current juvenile justice policy is more enlightened than in the past.
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H&P is based at the Institute of Historical Research, Senate House, University of London.
We are the only project in the UK providing access to an international network of more than 500 historians with a broad range of expertise. H&P offers a range of resources for historians, policy makers and journalists.