A large part of the work of the House of Commons and the House of Lords takes place in committees, made up of MPs or Lords. These committees consider policy issues, scrutinise the work and expenditure of the government, and examine proposals for primary and secondary legislation. Select committees (see below) operate largely by an investigative process, while legislative committees operate mainly by debate.

Select Committee news

Academics to be questioned on the redrawing of Parliamentary boundaries

Committee take evidence from two authors who reviewed rules for redistribution of parliamentary constituencies

What's on

Thursday 23 October 2014

House of Commons

Main Chamber

Time Business
9:30am Oral Questions

Transport, including Topical Questions; House of Commons Commission; Leader of the House of Commons

Business Statement

Leader of the House

Backbench Business

(i) Repeal of Fixed-term Parliament Act 2011 (ii) Oral hormone pregnancy tests

Adjournment - Charlie Elphicke

Cyberbullying and digital anonymity

Westminster Hall

Time Business
1:30pm - 4:30pm

Debate on the eighth report session 2013-14 of the Science and Technology Committee: Communicating climate science, (HC 254 2013-14), and the Government response (HC 376 2014-15)

General Committee

Time Business
11:30am - Room 10, Palace of Westminster Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill Committee

to consider the Bill

11:30am - The Boothroyd Room, Portcullis House Pension Schemes Bill Committee

to consider the Bill

11:30am - Room 14, Palace of Westminster Childcare Payments Bill Committee

to consider the Bill

Select Committee

Time Business
9:30am - Room 5, Palace of Westminster High Speed Rail (London-West Midlands) Bill

High Speed Rail (London-West Midlands) Bill - HS2 Action Alliance Ltd

10:00am - The Wilson Room, Portcullis House Political and Constitutional Reform

The future of devolution after the referendum - Professor Jim Gallagher CB, Nuffield College, Oxford

11:00am - The Wilson Room, Portcullis House Political and Constitutional Reform

What next on the redrawing of Parliamentary boundaries? - Professor Ron Johnston and David Rossiter

11:45am - Room 16, Palace of Westminster House of Commons Governance

House of Commons Governance - Rt Hon Sir Alan Beith MP, Chair, Liaison Committee, Rt Hon Sir Alan Haselhurst MP, Chair, Administration Committee and Rt Hon John Thurso MP, Chair, Finance and Services Committee

House of Lords

Main Chamber

Time Business
11:00am Introduction(s)

Baroness Chisholm of Owlpen


Lord Scriven

Royal Assent
Oral Questions

Plans to legislate that cyclists must wear helmets

Oral Questions

Tackling under-employment and help for those working part-time who want a full-time job

Oral Questions

The prospects for the free trade agreement between the US and the EU

Oral Questions

Mobilising NATO resources against the ebola epidemic

Debate - /

Contribution of the construction industry to the UK economy

Debate - /

Improved alternatives for young people not attending university

Debate - /

Economic and social development in Malawi

Grand Committee

Time Business
2:00pm Orders and Regulations

Copyright and Rights in Performances (Certain Permitted Uses of Orphan Works) Regulations 2014

Orders and Regulations

Copyright and Rights in Performances (Licensing of Orphan Works) Regulations 2014

Orders and Regulations

Legal Services Act 2007 (Approved Regulator) (No. 2) Order 2014

Orders and Regulations

Judicial Appointments (Amendment) Order 2014

Orders and Regulations

Scotland Act 1998 (Transfer of Functions to the Scottish Ministers etc.) Order 2014

Orders and Regulations

Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014

Debate - /

Outcome of the 2014 general election in India

Select Committee

Time Business
10:05am - Room 1, Palace of Westminster External Affairs (EU Sub-Committee C)

EU and Russia - (at 10.05am) evidence will be heard from Tracey McDermott, Director of Enforcement and Financial Crime, Financial Conduct Authority; and Shona Riach, Director International, HM Treasury and at approximately 11.05am from Vladimir Kara-Murza, Coordinator, Open Russia

More about committees

Select committees

Both Houses establish select committees to conduct inquiries and to produce reports on a range of matters, from the conduct of Government to specialist subject areas. Information on their work can be found on the select committee page.

Legislative committees

Both Houses refer legislation to committees for detailed discussion and approval. These committees are part of the process of making laws and include public bill committees, delegated legislation committees and committees on private bills. There is more in Bills and Legislation.

Other committees

Some other committees are established either by statute of either House, with a range of specific functions. These committees can be found through Committees A-Z.

Guides to committees

The About Parliament section of our site provides information on the types of Parliamentary committees and their work.

Select Committees Film

This short film explains the role and impact of select committees of the House of Commons, their membership, how they conduct inquiries, what it's like to be a witness and how you can get involved.