Policy Press Shorts

Policy Press Shorts are short-form books which deliver original ideas and valuable content in a concise, easily accessible way.

We publish three types of these which can be summarised as follows: 

  • Policy Press Shorts: research - books providing the latest cutting-edge research findings (longer than an article but shorter than a monograph) significantly quicker than the usual monograph route;
  • Policy Press Shorts: insights - inspiring new social commentary and insights on topical issues, so you can join the debate quickly and authoritatively;
  • Policy Press Shorts: policy and practice – work which will have an impact on policy and practice in key areas of society. 

These titles are between 20-50,000 words and take no more than 12 weeks in production. 

See our information for authors if you are interested in submitting a Shorts proposal.

Showing 1-24 of 52 items.

Prison suicide

What happens afterwards?

Prison suicides reached a record high in 2016 in England and Wales. Provides the first detailed case study of the investigations that follow prison suicides with findings relevant at a global level.

Borders, mobility and belonging in the era of Brexit and Trump

Using cutting-edge academic work on migration and citizenship to address three themes central to current debates – borders and walls, mobility and travel, and belonging - the authors provide new insights into the politics of migration and citizenship in the UK and the US.

Comedy and critique

Stand-up comedy and the professional ethos of laughter

Comedy and Critique explores British professional stand-up comedy in the wake of the Alternative Comedy movement of the late twentieth century, seeing it as an extension of the politics of the New Left: standing up for oneself as anti-racist, feminist and open to a queering of self and social institutions.

Life in the debt trap

Stories of children and families struggling with debt

The first hand stories in this book, collected through The Children's Society's campaign The Debt Trap, offer a unique understanding of life for families and children fighting a daily battle against poverty and debt.

Squaring the circle on Brexit

Could the Norway model work?

Two preeminent Norwegian scholars of politics and law offer a comprehensive first-hand account of Norway’s relationship with the EU and how this affects the country’s legal and political system, setting out what Britain can learn from Norway’s experience and how transferable these lessons are.

Fake goods, real money

The counterfeiting business and its financial management

The books examines the financial and business structures of the counterfeiting business and considers how the internet and e-commerce present financial opportunities for counterfeiters. It explores ‘organised crime’ and criminal markets, digital technologies and cultural values and practices.

Enabling participatory planning

Planning aid and advocacy in neoliberal times

How to build houses and save the countryside

Focusing on house building and conservation politics in England, Spiers uses his considerable experience and extensive research to demonstrate why the current model doesn’t work, and why there needs to be both planning reform and a more active role for the state, including local government.

Repealing the 8th

Reforming Irish abortion law

Irish law only currently allows for abortion where the life of the pregnant woman is at risk. A constitutional referendum will be held in 2018 to liberalise abortion law. This book offers practical proposals for policymakers and advocates, including model legislation, making it an essential campaigning tool leading up to the referendum.

Regulating police detention

Voices from behind closed doors

Custody visitors are volunteers who make unannounced visits to police custody blocks to check on the welfare of detainees. However, there is a fundamental power imbalance between the police and these visitors. This timely book offers detailed proposals for radically reforming custody visiting to make it an effective regulator of police behaviour.

Unravelling Europe’s ‘migration crisis’

Journeys over land and sea

This important new book provides a framework for understanding the dynamics underpinning recent unprecedented levels of migration across, and loss of life in, the Mediterranean, casting new light on the ‘migration crisis’ and challenging politicians, policy makers and the media to rethink their understanding of why and how people move.

Environment in the lives of children and families

Perspectives from India and the UK

Based on involved creative, qualitative work with families in India and the UK who live in different contexts, this book illuminates how environmental practices are negotiated within families, and how they relate to values, identities, and society.

What death means now

Thinking critically about dying and grieving

Bringing 25 years of research and teaching in the sociology of death and dying to this important book, Tony Walter engages critically with key questions around this universal fact.

Rethinking poverty

What makes a good society?

This book calls for a bold forward-looking social policy that addresses continuing austerity, under-resourced organisations and a lack of social solidarity. Based on a research programme by the Webb Memorial Trust, a key theme is power which shows that the way forward is to increase people’s sense of agency in building the society that they want.

Consulting skills for social researchers

This practitioner-oriented text is the first to help social researchers define research projects, manage the social research process, engage with stakeholders and influence change. It will be invaluable for all those commissioning, managing and conducting social research.

American Tianxia

Chinese money, American power and the end of history

After a meteoric rise, China's growth has come to a screeching halt. Salvatore Babones provides an up-to-date assessment of how China's economic problems are undermining its challenge to the Western-dominated world order. He tells how liberal individualism has become the leitmotif of American Tianxia.

Obama’s welfare legacy

An assessment of US anti-poverty policies

Using new research, Anne Daguerre examines Obama’s legacy on welfare and antipoverty policies, focusing in particular on the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Paying for the welfare state in the 21st century

Tax and spending in post-industrial societies

Amid urgent debates around the function of welfare in the post-industrial 21st Century, and how we pay for it, David Byrne and Sally Ruane deploy the concepts and analytical tools of Marxist political economy to better understand recent developments, and the possibilities they present for social change.

Reimagining the nation

Togetherness, belonging and mobility

This book develops new ways of thinking beyond the nation as a form of political community by transcending ethnonational categories of ‘us’ and ‘them’. Drawing on scholarship and cases spanning Pacific Asia and Europe, it provides a constructive agenda for critical nationalism studies.

Legal aid in crisis

Assessing the impact of reform

This book is the first to evaluate the recent reforms of UK legal aid from a social policy perspective and assess their impact on family law courts and advocacy. It argues that the reforms effectively ‘delawyerise’ disputes, producing a more inquisitorial justice system and impacting the litigants, court system, staff and process.

Supporting struggling students on placement

A practical guide

Practical guidance that will further knowledge and engender confidence for any teachers, assessors and supervisors on courses with a practice learning component, based on the authors first-hand experience and international multi-disciplinary research and literature.

Solitary confinement

Lived experiences and ethical implications

This book is the first to consider the history of solitary confinement and how it is experienced by the individuals undergoing it. It provides first-hand accounts of the inhumane experience of solitary confinement to provide a better appreciation of the relationship between penal strategy and its effect on human beings.