What is The Model United Nations?
The MUN is a gathering of students with an aim to accurately recreate a United Nations convention. There is always a main theme, which is generally an important
Global issue such as climate change or population distribution. Typically, all 193 member states of the UN attend the gathering, although in most school’s MUN’s fewer attend.
The participating countries, made up of a group of students, send a ‘delegation’ to the convention - typically formed of a combination of ministers, diplomats and/or Ambassadors. The UN addresses the issues in question through specialised ‘committees’. Examples of these are UNEP, WHO, UNICEF and UNSC. Each country must have at least one member participating in each of the committees within their delegation. The committees have specialised ‘sub-topics’ that relate to the global theme and need addressing for the benefit of the international community.
The MUN conference starts with an Opening Ceremony. There are introductory speeches and opening statements from each of the countries. The students then gather in their committees with one student representative on each committee. The debates start with reading of position papers. After the debate resolutions can be drafted, submitted and then voted upon.
The 2015 The British School Warsaw MUN
The 2015 TBS MUN kicked off this year on Friday 17th April at the library of the University of Warsaw, the students chose this venue as an establishment which represents knowledge, understanding and learning. After a brief introduction from the Principal of The British School Warsaw the floor was handed over to TBS student Dominik Vuina, this year’s Secretary General, who spoke a little about the MUN and introduced this years’ focus: population density. Over the next few days the student delegates spent committee time debating various topics from the perspective of the issues surrounding both over population and under population.
Her Excellency Mrs Andrea Bekic, The Croatian Ambassador to Poland then took to the floor giving an inspiring speech on the role of the negotiator. She spoke of the role of the diplomat and the idea of being a negotiator for peace. She spoke of the difficulties of trying to find the win-win situation, asking “do we want peace or justice?” and explaining that a successful negotiator should be aiming to achieve both trying to create just, honourable and long lasting agreements taking into account the perspective from both sides. She explained that as a negotiator you are a public servant representing your government, but you must also look at it from the perspective from the UN adding that in her opinion “ the best diplomats are not mere yes men, they are negotiators who are bold and sincere.”
Following on from this the student delegates gave their Opening Speeches; many inspiring speeches were made by the student delegates on behalf of the country they were representing. It was clear that the students had researched the position of their countries in detail and accurate and emotive points were made. The opening speeches commenced with the delegate of the United Kingdom taking the floor very rapidly followed by delegates from the United States of America, Germany, people's republic of China, Russian Federation, France, Mexico, Greece, Spain, Ukraine and many more.
A quick break for lunch and back to The British School Warsaw. The student delegates then gathered in their committees and two days of the delivering of position papers, intense debates and resolutions being voted followed.
Many thanks to the students of TBS who delivered an excellent MUN with challenging and thought provoking issues and were extremely welcoming to our students and well done to Katlo, Philip and Constantin who were excellent ambassadors of the school.