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Model UN

bowtiedsealbowtiedseal Registered User regular
edited January 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
Alright, so later this month I will be participating in the Model UN that takes place at McGill university. My problem is I have never before participated in model un, and since I was abroad last semester I missed all the preparatory meetings at my college. My assignment is in the UN Development Program representing an NGO. And I am completely lost as to what I'm supposed to do. I have the procedure pages printed out from the website and am kind of scared to look through it, but I am going to start memorizing all that tomorrow. A week from Saturday we're having a meeting at my school to share research and go over position papers. As of yet I have done no research and still don't have the password for the website, so can't work on my position paper yet.

Some questions:
What can anyone tell me about the Model UN experience? What should my research be focused on? What are some guidelines for a position paper?

Basically any advice to help keep me from freaking out. Thanks.

bowtiedseal on


  • SabreSabre Registered User
    edited January 2008
    I've been in your position before, as I did Model UN at high school, and a class in college that essentially was a Model UN where we were graded on accuracy of the portrayal of our assigned nation. Have you decided on the agenda yet? Sometimes you can do this ahead of time, but most times it is decided during the session.

    The biggest help for you would be to email (or call) the NGO and explain what's up. When I did this, I got assigned as China in HS, and Russia for the class. Both times I emailed their embassy in Washington, explaining what was up, and asking if they could give some insight into what their position and goals are with regards to the UN. I got tons of info back from both of them, more from Russia as I could give them a rough rundown of what the agenda was. Believe it or not, most nations and NGOs care a lot about how they are portrayed in these sort of things (well, at least they act like they do), and can give you some insight into how they think in general.

    As for the position paper, you should look at what they want to accomplish, who they will likely work with, and any tactics they could use to do so. It can require a lot of abstract thought, but you could include these questions in your contacts with the NGO to get an inside track on how to best put this in your paper.

    As an aside, which NGO are you representing in this?

    Sabre on
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  • bowtiedsealbowtiedseal Registered User regular
    edited January 2008
    The Red Cross. Thanks for the info, I'll look into emailing them.

    bowtiedseal on
  • SolidGobiSolidGobi Registered User
    edited January 2008
    Ok I'm not really sure how your model UN thing works exactly, but with mine we were assigned a country and then a organization of the UN. Like I was South Africa in the IAEA. Also we had topics that were to be discussed and that is what we wrote our position papers on. For example one of my topics was the situation in Iran. I would read the procedure pages, one question is this just people from your college participating or do many colleges participate in it?

    I'm not really sure you are doing the same type of Model UN as I am currently doing, so I'll just try to give you advice on paper writing. First off remember NGOs do not think or feel so never say "We feel this is important", or "We think this is a topic of importance." Use strong language, "This issue is important to the international community." Also never use the first person when talking, and yes that is trickier then it sounds! Just remember to use strong language in the paper and any speeches that you have to do. Also if you do a speec,h do not memorize the speech, if you forget a line it can mess you up hardcore.

    SolidGobi on
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