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Worksheet 4: How government makes decisions

How government policies are made and who helps to make them

Collect newsclippings about unemployment

Day One

  1. Divide the class into pairs.
  2. All except six groups choose to be 'government department teams' with an interest in youth employment. For example, there are the Work and Income New Zealand, Ministry of Youth Affairs and other representatives of the Ministry of Social Development, the Department of Labour, and the Treasury. Add any others about which you know.
  3. Each of the seven groups chooses to act as one or other of the 'Party leaders' represented in Parliament.
  • (20 min) Each government department team plans to research and prepare the case to put to government ministers promoting economic transformation.
  1. Meanwhile, leaders meet to prepare the agenda for the next talks on government arrangements.
  2. (40 min) Government department teams report to the other government department teams and the Party leaders the questions they will research, how they will research them and whom they will consult in preparing their report to future talks on government arrangements.
  • Research, consult and prepare report – including homework – consult with family, friends or neighbours on what they think the issues are and their suggestions to solve them. Use the website "links" page to find and review relevant briefings to incoming ministers on the issue.


  1. For further reference
    See also:

    How a bill becomes 
    an act

    Making the hard decisions
    Belinda Clark - Public servant
    What Ministers do
    Who's who in Parliament
    (party statements)

    How your voice may be heard

    Day two

  2. (30 min) Departmental teams make their reports to the Party leaders and other departmental teams.
  3. (15 min) Party leaders debate the solution to the unemployment problem.
  4. (15 min) Party leaders prepare media statements on their views for release to the media and to Parliament.