Using PEST analysis to identify external influences
A Legal Services Commission case study

Page 1: Introduction

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The Legal Services Commission (LSC) helps people to understand the law and, if necessary, helps them to gain their rights under the law. The funding provided by government for this work is known as legal aid and amounts to £2 billion per annum. The LSC administers legal aid in England and Wales. (There is a different system in place in Scotland.) The LSC helps people to know their...
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Page 2: External factors

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The LSC has to work within a changing environment and respond to many factors over which it may have no control. Many of these factors relate to government policies which impact on social, legal and economic areas of the UK. They also include the decisions of legal bodies, such as courts in the UK or European Union (EU), changes in the law and even changes in society. They are 'external...
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Page 3: Political factors

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In 1997 the new Labour government led by Tony Blair introduced the idea of reducing social exclusion. Social exclusion is when a person is left out of some or all of the benefits of society. Often people are left out because they are different or because they do not quite fit into the general idea of what is 'normal'.  Social exclusion is often linked to poverty, debt or lack of education...
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Page 4: Economic factors

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The workload of the LSC goes up and down with the performance of the economy.  In an economic downturn, it is likely that there will be more cases of social exclusion. This is because there are more business failures, along with more redundancy and unemployment. This change in people's circumstances may result in debt and eviction. It may also lead to higher levels of crime, for example...
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Page 5: Social and technological factors

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Society has a deep divide between those who have money, education and influence and those who have not. It is part of the government's policy on social exclusion to try to narrow this gap. Statistics show that legal and social problems tend to hit hardest those people who are least capable of coping with them. If you are a lone parent or unemployed, you are twice as likely to have problems with...
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Page 6: Conclusion

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The LSC protects people's rights. It makes sure that they get a fair trial and helps support them so that they are not excluded by society.  As a publicly-funded organisation, the LSC has to achieve its aims within a set budget. It has to provide an efficient service that gives the taxpayer value for money. The use of technology and of setting and monitoring quality goals has meant an...
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