Columbia University Holds Simulation of Catalan Parliament in New York

Article published by and at Generalitat de Catalunya – Gencat.cat

January 28th, 2015.

More than 50 high school students participated in a special committee organized by the Columbia International Relations Council and Association (CIRCA) as part of the XIV Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition.

Catalan Parliament

Earlier this month, the debates of the Parliament of Catalonia extended their reach to New York City. Over the course of four days, from the 15th to the 18th of January, the prestigious Columbia University gave more than fifty high school students the opportunity to assume the roles of elected representatives in the Catalan legislature in a special simulation held as part of the XIV Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition.

Well aware of the political importance of these exceptional times for Catalonia, student-delegates jumped into the current self-determination debate, analyzing the history of the process, the deliberation between political parties, and the potential challenges that might confront an independent Catalan State. The participants in the simulation did not, however, lose sight of the other important issues of the moment in Catalonia, such as public sector transparency, investment in públic Works and job training, relations with the central government, and involvement in international affairs.

This simulation of the Catalan Parliament provided new insight into contemporary Catalan politics in the United States, both for the participating students as well as the Columbia University community. Student-delegates involved in the simulation also had the opportunity to speak with a representative from the Delegation, who was able to answer a range of questions concerning Catalan history, politics, economics and culture before observing the simulation in action.
With over 700 student-delegate participants from 15 countries, the Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition is one of the leading model U.N. events in the world.

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