Simulating an Ordinary Legislative Procedure (OLP)

A new European asylum policy?

Should refugees be distributed across the EU according to a quota? Otherwise, how can responsibility and costs be fairly shared by all member states? Should cooperation with neighbouring states be increased in order to lower the number of refugees entering the EU? In the simulation game „Asylum policy in the EU“ representatives from the Commission, Parliament and the Council of Ministers are searching for agreement on these questions.

The game begins with a new proposal by the Commission. MEPs and Council ministers read up on the topic, form alliances during preliminary talks and try to convince their adversaries.

Then the official negotiations begin in Parliament. Before the first reading and a plenary vote can take place, the parliamentary groups and committees hold meetings while the rapporteurs collect amendments.

The draft – amended by Parliament – then goes to the Council of Ministers of Internal Affairs and of Justice, where eight selected EU states spend the duration of the game looking for the compromise that reality has yet to produce.

For shorter versions, (2.5h minimum), specific phases of the OLP can be chosen, e.g. only the initial negotiations in the Parliament or just the Council or the OLP’s first reading. The Parliament version is also available as an online game which optionally can be combined with an on-site game phase.

If a longer time period is available (1-2 days) the procedure (and with it, the game) can extend into a conciliation committee session, and even then there is no guarantee of successfully concluding negotiations.

Only one thing is certain: after the game, the participants will know the EU institutions and the OLP in their sleep! In addition, the will have developed a deep understanding of the difficult decision-making process dedicated to this complex topic on the European level. And maybe a few creative ideas for solutions that might be helpful in the real world…

Facts + Figures

Target group

Pupils (15 or over), students

  • Understanding the EU's institutions and their interplay in the Ordinary Legislative Procedure (OLP)
  • Gaining knowledge about the EU's current asylum policy
  • Developing an understanding of the complexity of political decisions on the EU level
  • Training negotiation and argumentation skills

Evangelische Akademie Bad Boll

EIC Lower Saxony

European University Viadrina, Frankfurt (Oder)

Parliamentary Group in the Bundestag Bündnis 90/Die Grünen

German Embassy School Addis Ababa, and other secondary schools


2,5h to 2 days

Number of participants



Bad Boll, Frankfurt (Oder), Addis Ababa u.v.m.


German, English



  • „I thought the overall design and structure of the event was great. First, the online game and then the simulated Council session – that was a lot of fun. On the whole, it was a lot to take in, but I really took a lot home with me“

    Participant of the bBlended version at European University Viadrina

  • „I spent the weekend taking part in Bad Boll, taking part in the simulation game on EU refugee and asylum policy. I had been interested in this seminar for a while, but in the end it was better than I had imagined. I won't deny that it was at times nerve-racking and generally quite exhausting, but we reached an agreement in the end. I learnt a lot about the EU's current situation regarding refugees“.

    Participant of the simulation game at Evangelische Akademie Bad Boll, 2015

  • „Dear future participant, I took part in the simulation game on European asylum and refuge policy and I can definitely recommend it – particularly if you possess nerves of steel! It takes time, particularly in this game, to reach a compromise. You will take home so many new impressions as well as new and unique experiences. I hope you have a fantastic few days, show them (slightly simplified) how politics could work! All the best, Holder of a TiL scholarship“.

    Participant of the simulation game at Evangelische Akademie Bad Boll, 2015

  • „Normally, I'm not that interested in politics, but the game still caught my imagination. Unfortunately, I had to play the role of a eurosceptic, but it was still a great experience“.

    Participant of the simulation game at Evangelische Akademie Bad Boll, 2015