based on our experience from organising international leadership simulations we are glad to welcome you as participants of our MODEL EUROPEAN COUNCIL 2017 (MEC 2017).
MEC 2017 is a simulation aimed to develop vital skills needed not only for the future leaders but anybody in their everyday lives.
What is MEC?
It is a diplomatic simulation. You – students- will represent the real members of the European Council and work on a specific EU issue, just like the real representatives. You will be the prime ministers or presidents of your country.
What skills do we focus on?
- communication (because we live in society and developed communication improves any interaction)
- argumentation (because we need to be able to explain our ideas in a good way for everyday communication)
- foreign language development (because the world today is globalised and we need to communicate with people from different countries)
- EU issues (because we live in the EU and actively solve EU problems)
- diplomacy (because international issues are solved internationally)
- information management (because in “the information age” it is vital to know the relevance and reliability of information)
- public speaking (because many people have a problem with this basic skill)
How to prepare well?
- every state is represented by the main representative and a minister. One of you will be the speaker (as the prime minister or president) the other as the advisor (the minister). You can share the work as you prefer
- study this page and the rules – in a case of problems do not hesitate to contact the Presidency. You can find them on this page
- study the Study guide – it will give you all the information needed about the issue. The study guide will be available by the end of August.
- find out the position of your country – look for news articles (e.g. Google news research) related to the topic, your country and main representatives (statements of the ministry or Prime minister)
- study the Conclusion from the President
- create your position – your ideas representing your country related to the issue
- don’t be afraid of anything, it’s a situation, the more you enjoy the negotiations and your new friends, the better experience and improvement you will achieve
- do not hesitate to contact the Presidency anytime needed
European Council – basics
Role: Defines the general political direction and priorities of the European Union
Members: Heads of state or government of EU countries, European Commission President, High Representative for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy (find details here: http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/european-council/members/euco-members/)
President: Donald Tusk
Established in: 1974 (informal forum), 1992 (formal status), 2009 (official EU institution)
Location: Brussels (Belgium)
Website: European Council (http://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/european-council/)
The European Council brings together EU leaders to set the EU’s political agenda. It represents
the highest level of political cooperation between EU countries.
What does the European Council do?
Decides on the EU’s overall direction and political priorities – but does not pass laws.
Deals with complex or sensitive issues that cannot be resolved at lower levels of
Sets the EU’s common foreign & security policy, taking into account EU strategic interests
and defence implications
Nominates and appoints candidates to certain high profile EU level roles, such as the ECB
and the Commission
Model European Council:
Rules of Procedure
Ahead of and during the MEC simulation, the presidency will be available to answer all your questions and help you anytime needed. Do not hesitate to contact them.
Language: English is used as the official language during MEC sessions.
Addressing the Presidency: It is important to address the President by his/her correct title (Mr/Madam President). It is also important to be polite and thank the President for the floor.
E.g. “Thank you for the floor Mr President.”
Addressing other interlocutors: The third person should be used when addressing others (distinguished/fellow/honourable representative of „the country “). It is an elementary way to show respect for the representatives.
Dress code: As a general rule, delegates must be dressed in Western business attire.
General Powers of President: Please note that President is responsible for determining rules that are in order to facilitate debate and discussion. In a case of conflict of interpretation, the President has the final authority for determining the applicability of the Rules of Procedure.
The composition of European Council:
Presidency: It consists of the President of European Council, the President of European Commission, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Secretary-General
Representatives of Member states: Every Member state has its own representative in European Council. It is possible for every head of the Member state to be accompanied by minister who is familiar with the topic being discussed during the session of European Council. List of real representatives can be found here:
General Affairs Council: It takes care of general and technical functioning of the European Council (supporting team)
Roll call: Attendance shall be conducted by the President by a Roll Call at the beginning of every session or during the session it the number of members has been changed. Representatives of the member states shall establish their presence in the Committee by raising their placards and declaring “Present”.
Agenda: Agenda must be set at the beginning of the conference. Ahead of the conference, a study guide will be available to study the topic of the meeting.
Technical point: When a representative has any type of question, personal privilege or point concerning the violation of rules of procedure, he/she can create letter “T” with his/her hands.
Motions: Representatives are able to propose motions during the session due to their own favour when President asks whether there are any motions in the house. When motion is raised, the President puts the motion into voting. Motion (and other procedural voting) passes if a simple majority is reached.
Motion for Opening/Moving into General Speaker’s list: Discussion basically takes place in General Speaker’s list. Representatives can add their country into the list if they want to speak by raising their placard when President asks representatives to do so or by sending the President a note. It is not possible to be added to the GS list when the delegation is already on it.
Motion to change the speaker’s time: It is possible to change the speaker’s time during the debate.
Yielding the time: Representative can yield (give) the remaining time of his speech to another delegate.
Questions: After every speech, the President asks the representatives for the questions for the last speaker. The time for the answer is set by the President.
Motion to move into a backstage discussion: Second type of discussion is not conducted (controlled) by the President. Representatives can freely move in the room, discuss the topic, create coalitions and work on conclusions. The length of the backstage discussion is set together with raising the motion for backstage discussion. It can be discussed with the President but it cannot exceed 30 minutes.
Motion to extend backstage discussion: It is possible to extend backstage discussion once. Again, the extension cannot exceed the previous length of backstage discussion.
Motion for Straw Poll: Straw Poll is simulated voting process on a concrete question. It can be used to see who supports a particular discussed point.
Interruptions: It is possible to interrupt the speaker only in the case of violation the rules or personal privilege by raising the Technical point.
Motion to close the General Speaker’s list: After closing the General Speaker’s list, the European Council moves into the process of creation the conclusions by sending amendments. From this moment, it is not possible to move back into General Speaker’s list.
Motion for the Suspension of the Meeting: A Representative may move for the Suspension of the Meeting to suspend all European Council activities until the next scheduled meeting time. The President may rule the Motion out of order without the possibility of appeal or put it to vote. It is usually used in the end of working time.
Motion for the Adjournment of the Session: A Representative may move for the Adjournment of the Session to suspend all European Council activities for the duration of the conference. The President may rule the Motion out of order without the possibility of appeal or put it to an immediate vote.
Order of Priority of Motions:
Adjourning the Meeting
Suspending the Meeting
Motion for Straw Poll
General Speaker’s list
Once the General Speaker’s list is closed, the European Council moves into the creation of Conclusion (final document of the MEC). Representatives start to present their amendments (proposals to adapt the document) by raising their placards or sending a note to the President. When an amendment is presented by the President, the creator will be able to speak about the amendment. After his speech, the voting procedure begins. During the voting, representatives must raise their placards in favour of the amendment or against. Abstention is not possible. Amendment passes once consensus is reached (all countries agree). Representatives can present their amendments until the debate is adjourned (Conclusion is finished).
Examples of real conclusions can be found here:
EUROPEAN DEFENCE PLAN
The security of the EUROPEAN UNION
SCHEDULE (can be still adapted)
8:00 – 8:45 WELCOME, REGISTRATION
9:00 – 10:30 MEC SESSION I.
10:30 – 11:00 COFFEE BREAK
11:00 – 12:30 MEC SESSION II.
12:30 – 13:45 LUNCH
14:00 – cca 16:00 MEC SESSION III.
8:30 – 9:30 MEC FINAL SESSION
9:30 – 10:00 COFFEE BREAK
10:00 – 11:30 MEC FINAL SESSION
starting 11:30 – MEC presentation (cca 15 minutes)
LUNCH after the presentations
Geocaching game (Žilina) – 8:30 – cca 14:00
FAREWELL PARTY (Terchová) – 17:00 – cca 22:00