NZ Model UN
11 – 14 July 2017
Venue: Victoria University of Wellington
Wellington 6012

NZ Model UN is the premier Model UN event on UN Youth’s calendar, offering four days of thrilling debate, engaging guest speakers and a wholehost of other events guaranteed to prove educational, exciting and, most importantly, fun.

Hosted at Victoria University in the heart of Wellington, NZ Model UN offers students the chance to interact with 250 other like-minded individuals on an equal playing field and to experience a little bit of life as a diplomat. NZ Model UN is a life-changing experience, giving everyone the chance to learn about the world around them whilst discussing relevant and serious topics in realistic and fast-paced committee sessions.

This year’s conference, set for 10 – 14 July 2017; with a packed schedule beginning with the traditional opening ceremony in the halls of Parliament, Delegates are sure to be fully immersed by the busy and fulfilling four-day agenda.


UN Politics: Ideals vs Realities

This year’s theme grapples with the conflict between self interest and idealism in international politics and examine how they may be reconciled. For advocates of the UN and global citizenship, neoliberalism is often seen as the way to go since it is idealistic and portrays international institutions as effective means of promoting cooperation and maintaining peace and security. However, this is at odds with neorealist theory which suggests that in practice, states will only use institutions when it suits them and will quickly ignore them when it doesn’t. To simply dismiss or downplay realism is to neglect a major school of thought which influences many in important policy roles around the world.

Indeed, we are now seeing a large-scale rejection of neoliberalism and the “false song of globalism”, with Brexit and Trump’s election to the US presidency showing that many people want the needs of their local community to be put before those of the global community. It’s for this same reason that we’re seeing a lot of apathy and opposition towards global efforts to mitigate climate change, as many want the economy and their jobs to be put before the environment.

As such, our educational theme seeks to examine these conflicting ideologies (albeit in a way that doesn’t get bogged down in theory) and our aim is for delegates to:

  1. Understand the legitimate interests behind states acting along realist lines;
  2. Analyse why we are seeing such a widespread rejection of international institutions and globalism; and
  3. Think critically about how they can promote idealism in a way that engages with and takes into account self-interest.