The following questions require the location of sources which establish the history of a policy area:
There are many sources that can be used to trace the history of or identify key landmarks in policy development.
Researching policy history
Use Library search or a research database to find books or articles that provide an overview or discuss the history of a policy area.
This may be useful in providing an understanding of policy differences over time and between governments.
Material that provides theoretical consideration of policy and policy change can also be located in these secondary sources.
refugee "government policy" Australia*
Official sources for policy history
Policy information can be sourced from many parliamentary and other official government documents. Consult the Parliamentary, legal and media sections of this guide for additional information and resources. The following all provide access to policy information.
Sources for Current Government Policy
Both the Federal and State Parliamentary Libraries publish many useful resources that can be used to trace the history of some policy areas. Publications include chronologies, background papers and notes, issues briefs and research papers.
The Australian Journal of Public Administration regularly publishes administrative chronicles of each State and periodically the Federal government. Administrative chronicles were published from 1976-1988 and recommenced publication in 1996.
The chronologies outline both administrative changes but also comment on policy administration and implications.
The following reports/publications all provide information on services or issues relating to income support policy. All can be located using government websites or Library resouces.
Locating Annual Reports from Goverment Departments and Agencies.
Tabled papers include documents and artefacts presented to Parliament in the course of its proceedings. The term ‘tabled’ literally means that a document has been laid on the Table in either or both chambers. The tabling of a document effects the publication of that document and the protection of parliamentary privilege. Documents tabled in Parliament include reports from parliamentary committees, annual reports of departments and agencies, reports from the Auditor-General and legislative instruments.
The Library holds many annual reports from government departments and agencies. They are available as part of the Parliamentary Paper series for both the Federal and State governments. These collections are located in print in the Law Library Compactus at G. AUS P and G. NSW P.
You can also locate reports in the Library catalogue see exmples below
Royal Commissions, Committees of Inquiry and many reports from House and Senate committees frequently make recommendations on proposed policy changes or may examine a specific policy. Use the Finding Australian Government Reports Guide to locate indexes for Parliamentary Papers and Royal Commissions like one below. As well as the Papers available online from Parliamentary websites or in volumes of Parliamentary papers you can search the catalogue by key or title and locate reports in the Library collection. For example try the key word search committee inquiry social security australia