HC Deb 22 July 2004 vol 424 cc607-8W
David Davis

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much his Department has spent on(a) opinion polling and (b) fccus groups in each year since 2001. [185270]

Fiona Mactaggart

The Home Office undertakes a wide range of research activities that support the development of information led policy.

The Department conducts or commissions such work only when it is justified by the specific needs of a particular policy or programme and when this is the most economical, efficient and effective way to achieve the purpose. Consulting and invoking the public helps inform both policy formulation and the delivery of better quality public services.

Research programmes are often complex and combine a mixture of quantitative and qualitative elements. It is therefore not always possible to break down the separate costs of polling and focus group components from the overall cost of a research project. It has therefore not been possible to provide the breakdown requested without incurring disproportionate cost.