When selecting a government topic for a research project, it is helpful to narrow your topic to a particular government area, such as education or environment, based on your background and interests. If you have a science background, you can use that understanding to your benefit by focusing on topics related to the environment. You may want to do some preliminary research before committing to a topic, to determine whether the scope of the available research will be sufficient to enable you to write a research paper with enough depth.

Social Programs

Programs such as welfare, child support, adoption, human trafficking and disaster assistance are some areas that the federal Administration for Children and Families oversees, with actual services provided by state and city government. Possible research topics could include the effects of the Welfare Reform Act of 1996, the federal government's response to Hurricane Katrina, a comparison of state child abuse laws and the need for stricter government control over labor or sex trafficking.

Corrections

Numerous states have passed "three strikes" laws that mandate a life sentence for offenders who commit a serious criminal offense on at least three occasions. Possible research topics could include studying government initiatives aimed at reducing prison costs, the effect on violent crime rates of states that have enacted "three strikes" laws and those that have not, and a comparison of the death row procedures of states that have enacted the death penalty.

Environment

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) conducts environment assessments and research, administers national environmental laws and is responsible for air and water quality. The EPA furthers environmental justice, meaning that it promotes fair treatment of all people regardless of race, color or national origin regarding the development and enforcement of environmental laws. Research topics could include a study of the political obstacles the EPA faces in promoting environmental justice on state levels or a study of air and water quality in poor economic regions.

Education

The U.S. Department of Education establishes, distributes and monitors financial aid for education, conducts educational research and is charged with ensuring equal access to education for all people. Research topics could include the effects of standards-based education reform programs such as the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, educational benefits for veterans, the costs and benefits of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and an assessment of current government programs supporting education for girls and women.