Web Magazine for Information Professionals

Planet SOSIG: What's New in Politics?

Emma Place announces new training materials for the Web, Heather Dawson looks at at Web coverage of the recently run UK General Election and Chris Mitchell provides an update of activities from the Learning and Teaching Support Network Centre.

Virtual Training Suite Launched

SOSIG is pleased to announce the launch of 9 more free Web-tutorials teaching Internet skills for different social science subjects - ideal for students, lecturers and researchers who want to learn how to get the best from the Web. This brings the total to 16 - with one tutorial for each of the main subjects covered by the gateway (ranging from Anthropology to Women’s Studies). The tutorials give a guided tour of the Web for the subject, with expert “tour guides” from university libraries and national social science organisations. They can be accessed from the SOSIG Subject Guides page, or from the RDN Virtual Training Suite (where you will find the whole suite of 40 tutorials) [1].

Following the General Election on the Web

Heather Dawson, SOSIG Government and Politics Editor, reviews some of theWeb coverage of the 2001 UK General Election.

Elections on the Web

Politicians, the media and the public all turn to the Web at election time, and the array of online election resources has increased dramatically since the election in 1997. For the 2001General Election SOSIG worked to help people follow the election on the Web by:

The Web offers both primary and secondary information for elections. On the one hand you can read it “straight from the horses mouth” by looking at the sites of the political parties. On the other, you can look at the online news services or public fora to see the comments and views of others.

Historical manifestos from the three main parties 1945-1997 available from Keele University [3]

News Services

SOSIG offered a quick listing of election news services on the “What’s New in Politics” page [4].

No doubt the Web will be used in increasingly creative ways to cover future elections. If you need a helping hand on following further political developments now the election has taken place we suggest you:

LTSN Economics

Chris Mitchell from LTSN Economics provides an update of activities from the centre.

The Economics Subject Centre of the LTSN (Learning and Teaching Support Network), housed just down the hall from SOSIG at the Institute for Learning and Research Technology at the University of Bristol, has just launched a catalogue of books for teaching and learning in economics. Nearly two thousand paperbacks and cheap hardbacks are indexed by title, author, educational level and subject, and searchable via a ROADS database [6]. This is intended to help lecturers compile reading lists and choose course texts, but should also appeal to students and indeed to anyone with an interest in economics.

We are providing basic details on each book with a links to publishers’ sites or to Amazon for further information. We hope that with the evolution of the UK academic Web, we will eventually be able to offer an “is this book in my unversity library?” button.

The centre also hosts catalogues of software and online teaching material in economics, the latter of which has recently grown to three hundred items, reflecting a recent explosion in the number of lecture handouts, exam papers and slide shows being put online. Updates on Economics LTSN’s activities are available in the form of an RSS news channel, which you can browse for example through the personalisable “Grapevine” section of SOSIG [7].

Keep Up To Date with DEBE

The use of the Web in teaching and assessment in economics will be one of the themes of “Developments in Economics and Business Education”, a conference jointly organised by Economics LTSN and Biz/ed. It will be held in Bristol on the 17th and 18th of September 2001 [8].

If you would like to find out more about the work of LTSN Economics please get in touch via our email address ltsn-economics@bristol.ac.uk or via the contact details below:

Postal Address:
Centre Manager, Economics LTSN
ILRT, University of Bristol
8-10 Berkeley Square

Telephone: +44 (0)117 928 7071
Fax: +44 (0)117 928 7112
E-mail: ltsn-econ@bristol.ac.uk


  1. RDN Virtual Training Suite at http://www.vts.rdn.ac.uk/
    For John Kirriemuir’s At the Event article on the launch of the Virtual Training Suite in Edinburgh see http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue28/vts/
  2. lis-socialscience JISCmail list at http://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/lists/lis-socialscience.html
  3. Historical manifestos from the three main parties at http://www.psr.keele.ac.uk/area/uk/man.htm
  4. What’s New in Politics page at http://www.sosig.ac.uk/roads/whats-new.politics.html
  5. Elections/Political Parties sections of SOSIG at http://www.sosig.ac.uk/politics/
  6. ROADS database at http://www.economics.ltsn.ac.uk/books/
  7. “Grapevine” section of SOSIG at http://www.sosig.ac.uk/gv/
  8. DEBE Conference at http://www.economics.ltsn.ac.uk/debe/

Author Details

Emma Place
University of Bristol

Email: emma.place@bristol.ac.uk

Heather Dawson
SOSIG Government and Politics editor
British Library of Political and Economic Science

Email: h.dawson@lse.ac.uk
Web site: http://www.sosig.ac.uk/

Chris Mitchell
Project Manager (Economics LTSN)

Email: chris.mitchell@bristol.ac.uk