Montesquieu Institute: from science to society

Model European Parliament (MEP)

Since 1990 the Model European Parliament is the banner under which students simulate sessions of the European Parliament. In this way students experience how European cooperation works in practice. Another aim of these simulation sessions is to make the participants aware of a European identity.

In the past few years the idea of the Model European Parliament has become quite popular in the Netherlands. Each year over 2500 students from the highest grades of VWO and HAVO participate directly as European MPs in the Model European Parliament. Many others are involved in the organisation, selection and execution. After the sessions at the different schools, simulations are organised in each of the twelve provinces and in the area's of Amsterdam and Rotterdam. Provincial coordinators are in charge of these conferences. The schools which are affiliated to this simulation also pay attention to this project by organizing a European week, a European market or by means of other activities.

The provincial sessions serve as a selection tool for participation in the annual national conference, which lasts a week. The national conference is traditionally closed with a Plenary Session in the Hague, in the (former) assembly hall of the National Parliament. In addition, twice a year there is an international conference held in a European city, where the best students of the national MEP conferences of all member states and candidate member states of the European Union come together. Since 2016, the Netherlands participates also in conferences of the Western European member states.

Since 2013 the national activities of the Model European Parliament are organised by the Montesquieu Institute. The international sessions are mainly organised by the host country under supervision of an international steering committee.