Public policy

Public policy is the process by which governments translate their political vision into programmes and actions to deliver ‘outcomes — desired changes in the real world’. The ‘real world’ is changing and this has resulted in the movement towards greater use of evidence in policy design and implementation. Rational choice theory, or now more known as evidence-based policy, argues that focusing on scientific evidence, instead of history and culture, should guide our public policy making; the foundation of public policy is composed of regulations. Further substrates include both judicial interpretations and regulations which are authorized by legislation. Public policy is considered strong when it solves problems efficiently and serves and supports governmental institutions and policies, encourages active citizenship. In his book'Advanced Introduction to Public Policy', B. Guy Peters defines public policy as "the set of activities that governments engage in for the purpose of changing their economy and society" saying that public policy is legislation brought in with the aim of benefiting or impacting the electorate in some way.

In another definition, author B. Dente in his book'Understanding Policy Decisions' explains public policy as "a set of actions that affect the solution of a policy problem, i.e. a dissatisfaction regarding a certain need, demand or opportunity for public intervention. Its quality is measured by the capacity to create public value."Other scholars define public policy as a system of "courses of action, regulatory measures and funding priorities concerning a given topic promulgated by a governmental entity or its representatives." Public policy is embodied in "constitutions, legislative acts, judicial decisions."Public policy focuses on the decisions that create the outputs of a political system, such as transport policies, the management of a public health service, the administration of a system schooling and the organization of a defence force. In the United States, this concept refers not only to the result of policies, but more broadly to the decision-making and analysis of governmental decisions.

As an academic discipline, public policy is studied by professors and students at public policy schools of major universities throughout the country. The U. S. professional association of public policy practitioners, researchers and students is the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. Much of public policy is concerned with evaluating decision-making in governments and public bureaucracies. Public policy making can be characterized as a dynamic and interactive system through which public problems are identified and resolved by creating new public policy or by reforming existing public policy. Public problems can originate in endless ways and require different policy responses on the local, national, or international level; the public problems that influence public policy making can be of economic, social, or political natureThe Government holds a legal monopoly to initiate or threaten physical force to achieve its ends when necessary. For instance, in times of chaos when quick decision making is needed..

Public policy making is an exhausting and time-consuming'policy cycle'. The basic stages of policy cycle are as follows. However, the evaluation stage takes an in depth look into what can be learnt from the process as a whole, whether the original problem has been solved, if not, what is recommended as an alternative course of action. Thus, returning policy makers to the first step; each system is influenced by different public problems and issues, has different stakeholders. In public policy making, numerous individuals, non-profit organizations and interest groups compete and collaborate to influence policymakers to act in a particular way; the large set of actors in the public policy process, such as politicians, civil servants, domain experts, industry or sector representatives, use a variety of tactics and tools to advance their aims, including advocating their positions publicly, attempting to educate supporters and opponents, mobilizing allies on a particular issue. Many actors can be important in the public policy process, but government officials choose public policy in response to the public issue or problem at hand.

In doing so, government officials are expected to meet public sector ethics and take the needs of all project stakeholders into account. It is however worth noting that what public policy is put forward can be influenced by the political stance of the party in power. Following the 2008/2009 financial crisis, David Cameron's Conservative party looked to implement a policy of austerity in 2010 after winning the General Election that year, to shore up the economy and diminish the UK's national debt. Whilst the Conservatives saw reducing the national debt as an absolute priority, the Labour Party, since the effects of Conservative austerity became apparent, have slated the policy for its'needless' pressure on the working classes and those reliant on welfare, their 2019 election manifesto stating "Tory cuts pushed our public services to breaking point” and that “the Conservatives have starved our education system of funding”; this is a good example of how varying political beliefs can impact what is perceived as paramount for the electorate.

Since societies have changed in the past decades, the public policy making system changed too. In the 2010s, public pol

Sky Q

Sky Q is a subscription-based television and entertainment service provided by satellite broadcaster Sky Group in the UK, Germany and Italy. The flagship product from Sky, Sky Q launched in 2016 as a major revamp of the previous Sky+ and Sky+ HD services it replaced. Sky Q has been referred to as a "multimedia platform" that combines conventional television with on demand and catch up services, as well as third-party services, it includes a PVR set top box, multiroom set top box, a dedicated broadband-connected "hub", applications for mobile and desktop devices. As of April 2018, Sky Q was in 2.5 million homes in Ireland and Italy. In July 2018, Sky reported. Sky Q was first announced by Sky UK in November 2015 known as Project Ethan, was released in the UK in February 2016, it was also released for Sky Italia customers in November 2017 and in May 2018 for Sky Deutschland. In contrast to Sky UK and Sky Italia, existing customers in Germany and Austria could receive Sky Q through a free software update on existing UHD-capable "Sky+ Pro" receivers.

The flagship Sky Q "Silver" set top box has a 2 terabyte hard disk and 12 satellite tuners, allowing up to six live TV channels to be recorded while watching a seventh. This box is capable of receiving and displaying 4K resolution "ultra-high-definition" broadcasts, which were started by Sky in the UK in August 2016; the regular Sky Q box has 8 tuners, supporting broadcasts up to 1080p. A third box, Sky Q Mini, acts as a secondary device without tuners or hard drives that networks to the main box to allow the Sky Q service to be used in multiple rooms, can be used as a Wi-Fi "extender" to provide stable broadband connections; the Sky Q remote control is a redesigned compared to the older Sky+ one, using Bluetooth technology instead and containing a large touchpad for scrolling and selecting in the user interface. Using the Sky Q apps designed for the Android and iOS operating systems, Sky Q recordings at home can be watched on mobile devices on the go. Sky Q offers access to box sets on Sky Store.

In 2019, Sky teamed up with Netflix to offer that service with Sky Q for £3 per month, cheaper than a standard Netflix subscription, called "Ultimate On Demand". In August 2017, Sky added Dolby Atmos sound support on Sky Q. Sky announced that High Dynamic Range will be coming to Sky Q in 2019. Sky Q received positive critical reception in the UK. in April 2018 called the service "pure brilliance" and that it "keeps getting better", rating it 5 out of 5. TrustedReviews in April 2019 rated it 4.5 stars out of 5, praising the interface, on-the-go recordings, UHD resolution and Netflix integration, while criticising that it isn't cheap. Another review from 2019, by T3 rated it 5 stars out of 5, with the verdict stating "Sky Q was the best viewing experience money could buy and now, with Netflix seamlessly integrated into its UI, it has powered further away from its rivals." The cons were stated to be lack of Amazon Prime Video and HDR. Stuff rated it 5 stars out of 5 as of January 2019, commenting that it "works flawlessly and could change the way you watch TV", although adding that "Sky Q isn’t for everyone" and that for some people its "extra features will look like luxuries that might not be worth the extra expense".

TechRadar rated it 4.5 stars out of 5, calling it the "best TV subscription service on the planet", with its main criticisms being lack of Amazon Prime Video and HDR. A What Hi-Fi? Review from April 2019 gave it 5 stars out of 5, praising the content and multi-room ability, while criticising it for being expensive and the touchpad remote being "fiddly". TrustedReviews named Sky Q the "Home Entertainment Product of the Year" in 2016, beating PlayStation 4 and Xbox One S. Sky Q was rated "Best TV platform" by T3 in its 2018 awards. Actor Idris Elba is used by Sky UK for its advertising campaigns. NOW TV


Sindoor is a traditional vermilion red or orange-red colored cosmetic powder from Indian subcontinent worn by married women along the part of their hair. In Hindu communities the use of sindoor indicates a woman is married and ceasing to wear it implies widowhood; the main component of traditional sindooram is cinnabar and lime. Some commercial sindoor products contain synthetic ingredients, some of which are not manufactured to proper standards and may contain lead. Sindoor is traditionally applied at the beginning or along the parting-line of a woman’s hair or as a dot on the forehead. Sindoor is the mark of a married woman in Hinduism. Single women wear the bindi in different colors but do not apply sindoor in their parting of the hairline. Widows do not wear sindoor; the sindoor is first applied to the woman by her husband on the day of her wedding. After this, she applies it herself every day. A similar coloring ritual is named after another name for sindoor, kumkuma; the wiping off of the sindoor is significant for a widow.

There are many rituals associated with this practice. The most common is when a mother-in-law or older sister-in-law wipes off the sindoor when a woman becomes a widow; the widow will break her bangles and remove her bottu as well, many will remove their nose ring and toe rings. The parting of hair is symbolic of a river of red blood full of life; when the sindoor is removed the river becomes barren and empty. This custom is followed by all castes and social ranks; the red sindoor is significant for the married woman. When she becomes a widow she adopts plain white dress and removes all colour from her face including the bright red sindoor. Methods and styles of applying the sindoor vary from personal choice to regional customs. Many new brides will fill the whole hair line with sindoor, while other married women may just apply a red spot at the end of the hair line and forehead. A triangle shape on the forehead pointing towards the nose, with a diamond bindi for fashion, is being worn by younger women.

Female figurines excavated at Mehrgarh, Baluchistan seem to imply application of sindoor to the partition of women's hair in Harappa culture. According to the legends, Radha the consort of Lord Krishna turned the kumkum into a flame-like design on her forehead. In the famous epic Mahabharata, Draupadi the wife of the Pandavas wipes off her sindoor in disgust and despair at the happenings in Hastinapura. Use of sindoor is mentioned in the puranas Lalitha Sahasranama and Soundarya Lahari. Adi Shankaracharya writes in Soundarya Lahari: Jain women apply the sindoor in the cities. Jain nuns foreheads; the display of the sindoor is considered important to indicate the married status of the groom, whereas in several local cultures, sindooram is applied on their hair partings by unmarried women. Application of sindoor is a Hindu tradition. In the 19th century, Sufi leader Sharafuddin Maneri encouraged Muslim women to apply sindoor in Bangladesh; this was condemned by reformist movements. There are various forms of Sindhoor mentioned in Ayurveda.

Traditional sindhoor is made from natural ingredients used for facial makeup. Most used traditional Sindhoor is made from turmeric and lime juice. Other ingredients include Ghee, slaked lime; this is called Kumkum. Sindhoor is made from red sandal powder, saffron etc; the coloured powders sold. Traditional sindoor was made from other herbal ingredients. Unlike red lead and vermilion, these are not poisonous. Modern material being sold as sindhoor uses vermilion, an orange-red pigment, the purified and powdered form of cinnabar, the chief form in which mercury sulfide occurs; as with other compounds of mercury, sindoor must be handled carefully. Sometimes, red lead is added to sindoor. Red lead is toxic. In early 2008, allegations of high lead content led the U. S. Food and Drug Administration to recall batches of sindoor from several manufacturers. There are many Indian movies and dramas involving sindoor, with their themes revolving around the ritual's significance; these include Sindoor, Rakta Sindhuram and Sindoor Tere Naam Ka.

Bindi Tilaka Vermilion Mangala sutra Media related to Sindoor at Wikimedia Commons