The Public Policy Case Collection is a free educational resource designed for the use and training of public policy and development students and practitioners around the world. This collection presents audiovisual cases filmed on location in the Americas, Africa, and Asia, profiling innovative programs and initiatives, and exploring some of the world’s most pressing public policy and development issues. Full access to this password-protected collection is available via collection membership.

Cases are available for inclusion in a wide variety of online platforms, and educators have access to lesson plans and epilogues.  For CSO/NGO’s and local development groups who would like to use these cases for custom trainings and workshops, please see our NGO Support page. Please see below for other resources related to case use and creation, including the 2020 MOOC Creating the Case – Audiovisual Case Study Method and Creation.

“The problems facing the world today are incredibly similar across geographies – very often a solution developed in Mumbai can solve problems in London or Chicago”.

Professor William B. Eimicke



Below are preview videos of the cases from Public Policy Case Collection. For access to the full video and written case material you must enter an access password.

Data and City Management Cases

Big Data for Public Safety Cold open


 From Compstat to Gov 2.0 - Big Data in NYC – This case examines the use of "Big Data" and technology in the delivery of public services in New York City. It provides a look at the development of NYC's open data movements, and includes interviews with Police Commissioner William Bratton and Michael Flowers, founder of Mayor Bloomberg's "Geek Squad". Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Citi services across Brazil Cold open


City Services Across BrazilIn Brazil, a newly industrialized country whose democracy has been rocked by corruption and scandals, a group of private sector leaders have banded together to help new mayors and cities make their public services more effective and accountable through technology and increased citizen engagement. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Smart City Technology in Rio Promo


Civic Tech in NY and Rio - Can technology create new ways for citizens to interact with government and become part of the solution to long-standing urban problems? This case explores the implementation of open data systems in New York City and Rio de Janeiro and the 'Civic Tech' movements that they have helped create. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Technology and Development Cases

21st Century Digital India Cold open


Digital IndiaAn exploration of the world’s largest digital inclusion program, built on cross-sector partnerships between government, private business, and CSO's. This case asks whether India's Aadaar program will succeed in bringing millions out of poverty, and explores the complex privacy issues it presents. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Telemedicine and eDoctors Cold open


Telemedicine & eDoctors – Web-based technologies offer promising opportunities to improve health services and lower costs. While the US is held back by legal and policy barriers, the spread of “tele-medicine” in India is an exciting experiment bringing online medicine to the masses. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Internet in a Box _script outline_070318


Internet in a Box  - This student produced case explores an innovative program to bring the benefits of  the world wide web to rural communities currently offline. A group of Columbia researchers explore how an innovative “Internet In a Box” device can support learning in schools in the mountains and jungles of rural Peru. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required). 

Food Security Cases

Aid or Investment_cold open_no graphics_060418


Aid or Investment? Development and Conflict Resolution in Central Africa The Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda in central Africa are two countries that have been torn apart by civil war and conflict. Twenty-two years after the genocide that killed over 800,000, Rwanda has emerged with a vibrant economy, while in neighboring DRC, the civil war continues to undermine development. Is aid the solution or part of the problem? Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Revitalizing Afghanistan Cold open


Revitalizing AfghanistanRural Afghanistan is for many a “perfect storm” where warfare and poverty combine to undermine development. This case asks whether a very different approach to aid, built on local communitiy empowerment, can pave the way for success. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Cold open_Ghana_no graphics_060418


Conservation Agriculture and Global Warming in Ghana – Filmed on location in Ghana and USA, this report examines the debate on "conservation agriculture" and global warming. Can techniques such as "no-till farming" work in a developing country such as Ghana? Can they help sequester carbon from the atmosphere and help solve global warming? Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Sustainability Cases

Partnership for parks Cold open


PPP's For Public Green Space  An exploration of the successful cross-sector partnerships of the Central Park Conservancy and the Highline in New York City. This case highlights collaborative leadership and asks whether privately run public spaces can work as a model to be followed elsewhere. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Costa Rica_cold open_070918


Private Rainforest Reserves - Private wildlife reserves and sanctuaries have long been part of the conservation landscape in many parts of the developed world, but are less common in developing world contexts. This case explores two private rainforest reserves in Costa Rica and explores how they manage the contrasting demands of preservation and eco-tourism.  Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Education Cases

Schools of Tomorrow_Cold Open


Schools of Tomorrow – Across the globe, countries have expanded free public education, but recent studies show most systems fall short of their mark in terms of educational outcomes. Filmed on location in the South Bronx, Rio, and Mumbai, this case explores global efforts to make urban schools work. Click here for access to full video and written case material (password required).

Impact Investing Case Study Series

Social Impact - Cold Open



Doing Well by Doing Good - In collaboration with Worldview Global Impact (WGI), a New York-based NGO that promotes sustainability initiatives, the Picker Center is producing a new series of case studies that will examine this important global strategy from a variety of perspectives. The first case, Doing Well by Doing Good: An Introduction to Impact Investing, is available here (password required). 

Measuring Impact -The second case in the Impact Investing Case Study Series will examine the issue of how to measure impact, and will explore current metrics and standards used in the industry, including those created by the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), the UN Principles for Responsible Investing, MSCI, SASB, IIX and others. This case will be ready in the spring of 2021.

Cases Coming in 2020


Land Grab or Responsible Development? Oil Palm Concessions in Liberia - This case provides a detailed description of a foreign direct investment (FDI) in Liberia as a result of  President Sirleaf’s Poverty Reduction Strategy. Students are asked to decide whether the project, which led to foreign investment predominantly directed towards the Liberian palm oil, mineral, and timber industries, amounts to a land grab or whether it did in fact act as a legitimate development project.

Global Warming and Food Security in Vietnam - With over 2000 miles of coastline, tropical Vietnam stands to be strongly impacted by the changes that global warming will bring. This report follows the work of a team of Earth Institute researchers as they map Vietnamese food systems and help the country draw up a plan for a warmer future.


See below for further information and training on the case method and its techniques. For access to a database of nearly 100 additional Columbia University Case Consortium produced case studies and their accompanying material, please click here.



SIPA is part of the Global Public Policy Network, a coalition of leading public policy schools that offer advanced degrees in public policy in the USA, France, Germany, UK, Brazil, Singapore and Japan. All schools collaborate widely with dual degree programs and collective research.




Public Policy Case Collection Promo


Send us your contact information to request a free membership and receive full access to all video cases and written support materials

Contact Info

Public Policy Case Collection
Picker Center Digital Education Group
Adam Stepan, Director
[email protected]