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The Library: PR & Journalism


Freedom of Information

The Freedom of Information Act allows you to request and receive information from a huge number of publicly-funded bodies. There are several exemptions to the Act, however, so not all requests may succeed.

Before you make a FOI request, it may be worth doing some checking first. Most bodies affected by the act should have:

  • a publication scheme, which tells you what information they have already made publicly available
  • a disclosure log, which tells you what FOI requests they have already received. If the request was successful, they will provide the information; if the request was unsuccessful, they will say why.

Checking these before you make a request will avoid wasting time making requests for information that is already available.



Mass Observation

UK Government

  • TheyWorkForYou aims to make it easier to find information about Parliament, such as debates, questions, and profiles and data on MPs.
  • The websites of all government departments and many other agencies and public bodies have been merged into GOV.UK.
  • The website of the UK Parliament. It includes a wealth of additional information about parliament, including MPs, Lords and Offices, parliamentary business, parliamentary news, what's on, bills & legislation...

British Social Attitudes

British Social Attitudes Survey The primary social research survey in Britain. Since 1983, the annual surveys conducted by the National Centre for Social Research have continually monitored and interpreted the British public's changing attitudes towards social, economic, political and moral issues. Its findings are reported and interpreted in a series of annual reports.