The amazing world of MUNs

Oct 15, 2021

This year, a new club joined the Moisil family, that being Moisil MUN Club whose purpose is to train aspiring delegates for MUN conferences so that they can achieve the best versions of themselves.

I am the founder of this club and given the fact that I am deeply in love with MUNs I have decided to share with you why I think that MUNs are one of, if not the best extracurricular activity in which students can participate.

First of all, you may wonder what is an MUN?

Well, an MUN is a conference that simulates the activity of the United Nations, split among committees who deal with specific issues regarding international security, international law, finances, human rights and many more. Committees are varied in nature and each conference picks a select few before hand. This selection is done by the Secretariat of the conference, a section of the organizing team comprised of the Secretary-General and their deputy. They are in charge of academics and usually pick the committees and their topics. Committees may include: the well known Security Council, the very dynamic CRISIS committee, the often avoided (for no reason in my opinion) ICJ, the SOCHUM committee (Social, Cultural and Humanitarian committee), the ECOFIN committee (Economic and Financial committee), the DISEC committee (Disarmament and International Security committee) and many others, but these are the most common.

All of these committees welcome delegates whose duty is to represent the interest of the country they are a representative of. The number of delegates varies from committee to committee but their purpose stays the same with a few exceptions like the International Court of Justice, where delegates don't represent their countries interests but rather accomplish their objective through legal procedures and debate, which are impartial. Delegates should always have their country stance in mind when debating and should be prepared for an unique style of debate.

Why should you join an MUN?

Well, it is one of the most amazing experiences you can ever have. Besides all of the debating and research which do require quite a lot of time you will find the fun part of MUNs very engaging. From making new friends to having lots of fun at social events, you will enjoy MUNs all around.

Also if you are interested in applying at universities abroad, an MUN can be a very good addition to your CV. And especially if you are interested in international relations or law as you get to practice your skills in an environment that closely resembles the United Nations and the way they deal with issues.

Who organizes an MUN?

An organizing team, of course. Leaving the jokes aside, it is the job of an organizing team coordinated by the conference manager to ensure all technical aspects of a conference, while the Secretariat is in charge of the academic side. Besides these two entities, you may encounter the Presidency, comprised of the President of the General Assembly and their deputy. Their duty is to preside over the GA where all resolutions adopted by the GA committees are debated and then voted upon by all delegates present at the conference.

How does a committee work?

Each committee has a topic which will be debated by the delegates who must keep in mind their countries stance as they cannot express their own opinion on the topic. The debate will take place in the form of a General Speaker's List where the delegates who wish to speak raise their placards and after being added to the list by the chairpersons will speak when their time comes. The speeches have a time limit set by a motion at the start of the committee sessions and shall remain the same for the whole duration of the conference. Bonus time after the delegate ends their speech must be yielded to the chairs, to questions, or to the next delegate. After the General Speaker's list elapses, the committee enters into voting procedure on any draft resolutions currently on the floor. Delegates may propose amendments to resolutions and if their final form passes the vote, it is considered adopted by the committee and will be debated and voted upon in the General Assembly.

This is the most basic way to express the workings of a committee as besides this, delegates may propose motions with various effects on the activity of the committee.

There are also special committees like the ICJ that don't follow this procedure. In the example given, firstly the advocates shall make the opening statements, then they will present the evidence backing the claims made in the opening statements. After these presentations, the judges will pose questions to each side about what they presented that far. This part of the trial is followed by the questioning of the witnesses by both parties and subsequently the judges. After that come the rebuttal and surrebuttal and the final three questions to each side by the judges. Then, the judgment is redacted by the judges following their deliberation and presented by the presidency of the Court.

All committees are presided over by a team of chairpersons, usually two or three people who are in charge of the activity of the committee. They moderate the debates, count the votes, approve motions and give the awards to the best delegates of the committees. They also prepare the study guides which are necessary for all delegates in preparing their position papers before the conference.

To find out even more than I have presented in this article about the world of MUNs, come and join the Moisil MUN Club where we, the trainers, will make sure you can become the best delegate.

Here are some of my favorite photos from Vaslui MUN 2021:

Me and one of the most amazing persons I have ever met at an MUN, Cezara.
The whole committee dancing as a punishment
The judges from VSMUN (aka the best people ever)

Articol redactat de Cismaru Lucian.

Imagini de Cismaru Lucian

Articol editat de Botescu Ioana

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