Christchurch Model EU 2021

The 2021 Christchurch Model EU will simulate discussions taking place at the European Parliament. Participants will be assigned a European political party to represent as well as a Member State. The European Parliament is the Directly-elected EU institution with legislative, supervisory, and budgetary responsibilities.

2021 Christchurch Model EU theme:
Human Rights and the Challenge of Climate Change

European Parliament 

Delegates will assume the role of Ministers of the European Parliament (MEPs) to debate a draft directive focused on climate action. In preparation all delegates will receive an email with their respective role and suggestions on how to research their political party and countries’ position on climate change and the actions proposed in the draft directive.

Useful resources and starting points can be found in the Resources section below. 

Event details

When? 10th and 11th June 2021


  • Thursday 10th: 9.00am – 7.00pm
  • Friday 11th: 9.00am – 3.00pm 

Where? University of Canterbury, Christchurch 

Keynote Address: Diplomatic speaker

Health and Safety

If we have under 100 students participating we will be able to proceed under Covid Levels 1 and 2. To comply with government guidelines, we will not host more than 100 people in a room and our rooms will be big enough to enable physical distancing. If there are more than 100 students registered and we enter Level 2 then we will look at a virtual / in-person hybrid event.

Covid-19 precautions:

  • We strongly encourage you to scan the Covid-19 tracer QR code every time you enter a building.
  • We are using a manual register for contact tracing in addition to the governmental Covid-19 tracer app
  • Frequently use the hand sanitiser provided and cover any coughs and sneezes with your elbow.
  • If you are unwell, please stay home and contact us to notify of your absence

Covid Levels 3 and 4

  • If the Canterbury region is under Level 3 or 4 on the weekend of the event we will not proceed with the in-person format
  • If we cannot proceed students will be offered a refund
  • For those students who wish to participate in a shortened virtual format we will facilitate this with an online alternative run by Dr Serena Kelly

Welfare and Emergencies:

  • UC staff and supporting students are very happy to assist you. If you have any concerns, please approach one of us and we will do our best to help 
  • We have a H&S Form template available for any teachers that wish to utilise it – please contact for this 


Model EU Booklet 2021:

The Christchurch 2021 booklet will be linked here closer to the event 

Participants will also be emailed a copy of the student handbook, and provided with hardcopies on day one of the event

Teacher Professional Development

Parallel to the Model EU for students, UC is offering a one-day Professional Development Workshop in collaboration with the Aotearoa Social Studies Educators Network (ASSEN), providing teachers with EU Studies teaching resources that link into the NZ context and curriculum related to the Model EU theme. The EU and Europe are very broad areas and fit with many topics and subjects across the  curriculum, thus the workshop will be multidisciplinary and facilitated by experienced teacher educators and EU Studies academics. The workshop encourages networking and collaboration with colleagues, and the development of a “network of EU experts in schools”.

The workshop will be split over both Model EU days (2x half days) to allow time for teachers to observe their students, further engage with the material or focus on other tasks. 

Workshop times: TBC

There is no registration fee for the Teacher Professional Development Workshop. The NCRE can contribute towards teacher relief per participant which will be paid to the school. 

For more information please contact India Cable 

Why talk about Climate Change?

The Encyclopædia Britannica defines “climate change” as “periodic modification of Earth’s climate brought about as a result of changes in the atmosphere as well as interactions between the atmosphere and various other geologic, chemical, biological, and geographic factors within the Earth system”.
The planet’s climate has constantly been changing over geological time. But the problem now is that through human interference the planet warms up more rapidly than ever. Burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, increasing livestock farming, etc. increases the amount of greenhouse gases naturally occurring in the atmosphere significantly. This in turn increases the greenhouse effect and leads to global warming. Higher than usual temperatures lead to melting glaciers, spreading deserts, extreme weather events are increasing common and result in great costs to lives and homes.
Because climate change has so many negative consequences, it is an issue of global importance and therefore also of great importance to the EU. The EU has ambitious climate goals, for example, to reduce its greenhouse gases by 55% by 2030, and generate at least 32% of its energy from renewable energy sources and a 32.5% improvement in energy efficiency. Is the EU on track?

In December 2020 EU leaders agreed on an ambitious goal for cutting greenhouse gases – reducing them by 55% by 2030. The new target was reached after difficult all-night talks in Brussels. Poland, heavily reliant on coal, won a pledge of EU funding to help it transition to clean energy. The EU Commission will draw up detailed plans for all 27 member states to contribute to the 55% target, measured against 1990 CO2 emission levels. EU Council President Charles Michel hailed the agreement, tweeting “Europe is the leader in the fight against climate change”. It is part of a global effort to tackle climate change by cutting atmospheric pollution, especially carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Why attend a Model EU event?

The EU and Europe do not feature prominently in New Zealand media and school curriculum despite its strong impact and influence on this part of the world. The “EU in Schools” project encourages incorporation of EU content into the curriculum by engaging secondary students and teachers in EU Studies.

The project organises Model EU training and simulations for high school students and Professional Learning Development (PLD) workshops for teachers. The Model EU training and simulation events provide students with practical, hands-on experience of the EU’s processes and challenges. Participants are introduced to the EU, its governance and the event subject through interactive and self-directed learning. Themes are relevant to young people and relate to current developments in the EU.

For more information on upcoming events keep an eye on our Events and Opportunities Page or scroll on to see what happened at past Model EU events. 

With the help of a grant from the Erasmus+ Jean Monnet Programme of the European Commission, the EUCN and NCRE are pleased to offer Model EU Training and Simulation events as well as Professional Learning Development Workshops for Teachers across New Zealand.

What is a Model EU event?

The EUCN in partnership with the NCRE and the EU Delegation to New Zealand are pleased to offer Model EU Training and Simulation events to high school students across New Zealand. Students assume the roles of ‘Members of the European Parliament (MEPs)’, representing  a political party and a Member State (MS) country. Delegates then work with members of their own party and those with similar interests to form a position on the various issues and find the best outcome to dealing with the crisis. Debate takes place in Committee session over 2 days and culminates in a Plenary Session at the end of the second day when Delegates attempt to accept a new Directive.

Register Here

Please register for Model EU via Eventbrite:

Registrations are open until 14th May


The events in this LINK were organised with the help of the “Model EU in Schools” grant 2014-2017.