Young and passionate. Speech of a 12th grader Sara Kamboj here.
What is a Model UN?
A Model United Nations is a conference, usually lasting between three days and a week. Gathering students – called “delegates” – together, the conference is a simulation of diplomats’ work within the United Nations. The general structure of the United Nations is reproduced: the main organs and committees are represented; delegates impersonate a country in their own committee, and adopt their country’s position about a specific topic. Debating whether in formal debate, moderated or unmoderated caucus, delegates exchange and negotiate in order to write, vote and pass a final resolution, aiming at proposing solutions to the international stakes underlain by the topic.
In the 1920s, Model United Nations used to be conferences reproducing the League of Nations’ model. Such opportunities were created to show students the importance of learning peace, dialogue and cooperation in order to avoid war, as much as to defend their country’s interests. Ever since, Model United Nations started becoming more popular and are nowadays one of the most important exercises of diplomacy. Especially recognized in English-speaking countries, MUNs occur today all around the world, with famous simulations in the United States, Russia, England, Korea, Turkey, Australia and so on.
Model UNs becoming increasingly important, students of Universities in Paris (Sciences Po, Panthéon-Assas, Panthéon-Sorbonne, Ecole Polytechnique, ILERI, and the American University of Paris) decided to launch the Paris International Model United Nations in 2012; in 2016, our ambition is to make PIMUN one of the main UN simulations in the world, gathering 800 delegates from over 100 countries.