• READ the background guide.

    • This is the dais explicitly stating what it wants to see the committee address. Pick out the problems associated with the topic and write them down. These are key points for a resolution.

    • Look over the key terminology and concepts. You don’t want to be cut out of debate because you can’t keep up with the vocabulary or the background of the topic.

    • If there is a ‘bloc positions’ section, find out which countries agree with your view. You can network out to them easily in the opening committee session.

    • At the end there should be some ‘Questions to Consider’. These are must-haves for any resolution, and a good way to figure out where to start off researching.

  • LOOK UP some more background on your topic and your country. The background guide is available to everyone in the committee, and the better resolutions will also try to incorporate some other issues that the background guide doesn’t cover. Check sites like Wikipedia, B.B.C, Brittanica, and JSTOR. (they have great factsheets on a lot of topics!). Find out about the topic’s fundamentals, and what problems there are that need targeted action.

    • If it’s a political topic, find timelines to track the topic’s long-term progression. Maps might help.

    • If it’s a scientific/medical topic, be sure to read a basic amount into technical aspects.

    • At this point, you should be able to make a list of the core issues you want to tackle in your resolution.

    • Find background on your country (cia.gov).

    • Research your country’s allies regarding the topic.

  • SEARCH what has been already been done towards solving your list of core issues.

    • What has your country’s government done? Was it successful? If not, why did it fail? If your country found a unique success or failure, that knowledge can be used to better frame ideas in committee.

    • What has your regional bloc (AU, EU, ASEAN, OAS, LoAS) done?

    • What has the UN done—and has your country supported that action? Some topics have had UN Conventions specifically addressing them, or have specific UN subcommittees/task forces/offices to handle them. Go on the UN web site, and use the search engine to look up UN resolutions on your topic or transcripts of committee sessions discussing your topic. These are good precedents you can check to see what’s left to do, or what needs to be fixed in the current system.

    • What have NGOs working in your country done? Look at key non-governmental agencies, especially for humanitarian topics.

    • How has your country worked with other nations on the topic?

  • IDENTIFY your country’s policy on the topic.

    • Look up any specific agencies your country might have for your topic. Check your country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs—every country has one where their views on most topics are explained.

    • Find speeches by major government officials from your country.

    • If you’re a small country (most of the ones we have) you will most likely not find your policy. Infer based on your social conditions and economic well being. Think of it this way: if you do not find your country’s policy, it’s likely nobody else will know it. Just stay within bounds of realism if you are a small country and don’t feel limited by your lack of a policy.

  • LIST solutions to each of the issues you’ve identified on your topic.

    • Solutions are everywhere. Advocacy sites, research groups, non-governmental organizations, government offices. Look for published reports from major agencies that detail future outlook; such documents can sometime have cohesive summaries on your topic.

    • Look into not only what the solution is, but who will manage it, where it will be implemented, and how it can be applied as effectively as possible. The more details you write down, the better prepared you will be to take full control of your resolution and to dominate question-and-answer sessions in committee.

    • Always stay on policy with solutions.

    • Print this list of problems and solutions and keep it with you for committee.

  • Find statistics and facts and print those as well.

  • If you can do so, create an acronym for your solutions to present in committee.

 

Author: Dhruva Nistane

Published: October 10, 2018