Run by UN Youth NZ, the Diplomacy Competition is a new initiative that secondary school students can participate in – an online Model UN competition! It is a year-long initiative and it was run for the first time just last year. Registration is free and it is open to any secondary school student in New Zealand. This event seeks to further increase the accessibility and educational value of Model UN while adding an exciting competitive aspect.What will the Competition involve?
Each Team will be randomly assigned a country and given a Briefing paper and Resolution on a particular topic. You will use these resources to research and produce a Position Paper. Afterwards, you will have the opportunity to read other Teams’ Position Papers, comment on them, and then revise your own Position Paper. Both external facilitators and other teams will mark each Position Paper.
The Competition is being run by a small organising committee, supported by a number of UN Youth Volunteers as facilitators.
Up to 4 secondary school students.
To register, you will need a team name and the names and email addresses of all your team members. Teacher liaison details will also be collected if available.
Teacher liaisons will be the Diplomacy Competition’s designated contact at a particular school. Ideally, we’re aiming to have a teacher liaison at each participating school. However, students from schools that don’t have a teacher liaison will still be able to register and compete.
We encourage students to be from the same school if possible, but if there aren’t enough interested students at your school you can form an independent (inter-school) team.
There will be four Rounds run being 4-weeks long each. The points that you earn in each round accumulate throughout the year to form a leader board.
The four Rounds correspond to the following periods of the year: Second half of Term 1, First half of Term 2, Second Half of Term 2, First half of Term 3. This leaves time at the beginning of the year for registrations and time at the end of the year for exams.
The competition is intended to be able to scale up to any size, depending on demand. Registered teams will be divided into pools (roughly 25 teams per pool).
There will be four Phases – Researching, Negotiating and Amendments, Writing, and Marking and Voting. The exact lengths of each Phase will vary, but the start and end times will be confirmed before the Round starts.
A Position Paper is a report that presents an opinion about an issue. In this case it will be from the perspective of your member state.
Contemporary and current global issues. Similar topics to those that you would encounter at a Model UN conference.
It depends on how involved you want to be, anything from a couple of hours a week to 8 hours spread across your team
During one phase of the Competition you will be able to comment on other teams’ Position Papers and in another phase you will be able to mark them. External markers will also mark the Position Papers based on an official marking scheme. We will be using a crowdsourcing model to moderate between individual Markers. Finally, your contribution and interaction with other teams will also contribute to your overall mark and the number of points you are awarded for a particular round.
University students can get involved as Facilitators. We will begin recruiting Markers for the year around the beginning of March.
If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why has the Diplomacy Competition been created?
Technology provides us with a greater ability to engage with our education programme at any time, allowing flexibility around the availability of participants. We want to take advantage of technology’s levelling effect and use it as an educational tool to support the collective development of students in an online environment. By tapping into the benefits of modern technology, we hope to make Model United Nations a more frequent activity that students can be involved in regularly and all year round.
As our conferences reach capacity, potential delegates have to be turned away for logistical reasons. This competition is designed to be scalable to ensure that every student in New Zealand has the opportunity to engage with our civic education programme. We believe that Model United Nations should be for everyone and we want to bring together more groups of students, across different cultures and greater geographic distances, outside of the four main city centres. Better yet, this will all be in real time for the purposes of developing skills and gaining knowledge.
The Competition has been designed as a platform to facilitate a wide variety of educational content that can be tailored to meet the New Zealand schools’ curriculum. We want to increase the availability and academic relevance of the Model United Nations experience, engage more students in collaborative problem solving and foster leadership and positive engagement through the discussion and debate of the world’s most pressing problems.