The John L. Alford case library

The John L. Alford case library is an internationally recognised library of public sector cases and a unique resource centre for the advancement of interactive teaching.

It brings together carefully constructed ‘stories’ about public sector challenges, dilemmas, successes and failures.

Created in 2004 to remedy the lack of public sector teaching cases relevant to Australia and New Zealand, the library is now the third-largest collection of public policy and management cases in the world, with nearly 200 cases covering a wide range of topics from all levels of government.

This resource and the following information was contributed by Alice Macfarlan (BetterEvaluation and ANZSOG).

Authors and their affiliation


Key staff involved in the ANZSOG Case Program:

  • Michael Di Francesco, Associate Professor in Public Sector Management and Case Program Director, ANZSOG Sydney
  • Marinella Padula, Research Fellow, ANZSOG Melbourne
  • Margot Schwass, Case Writer and Researcher, ANZSOG Wellington
  • Michelle Tunley, Case Program Officer, ANZSOG Melbourne

Key features

The John L. Alford Case Library offers users a regularly updated collection of catalogued cases, and is designed as a resource for both instructors using interactive teaching approaches, and for practitioners and researchers seeking authoritative accounts and analyses of important public policy and management issues. Each peer-reviewed case is expertly researched and based on real cases of decision making in the Australian and New Zealand public sectors. Many are accompanied by dedicated teaching notes and exhibits.

The John L. Alford Case Library is an open access collection permitting case downloads free of charge. With the exception of the Teaching Notes, all material in the Case Library is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

How have you used or intend on using this resource?

I haven't personally used the Case Library in my work, however it was designed to be used in executive and graduate classrooms to stimulate discussion and sharpen analysis. It can be used to help students to apply their own experience and better understand key conceptual frameworks, and policy and management tools.

Why would you recommend it to other people?

While I haven't used the resource in my own work, I have gone through and read some of the cases out of personal interest. For someone living in Australia or New Zealand with an interest in public policy and/or decision-making, it's fascinating to have an inside view of the decision-making process at key moments in the public sector.


ANZSOG (n.d.). The John L. Alford Case Library.  Retrieved from: