Step 1: Country
First things first of course, you start with researching your country. A good starting point is researching your country’s history, internal structure, economy, military and foreign policy.
This information is important because it will help you understand why your country adopts certain positions and policies. Being aware of your country’s historical developments as well as its political and social background will help you understand its people and the arguments they would use to support or oppose different policies.
At an MUN you really want to defend your country’s general position and preferences. Knowing your country by heart is the first step towards victory.
Step 2: Committee
Second, you’ve been given a committee. Whether this is the UNSC, UNHRC or ICJ, it doesn’t matter. It is important to know what your committee talks about and what it can do and cannot do. Start with researching the history of the committee and make sure to fall in love with it because you’ll spend several days in it.
Step 3: Topics
Step number three is where it becomes serious. Your topics. During our MUN you’ll be given two topics that you’ll discuss intensely during the committee sessions. A completely understanding of the topics and its issues will put you in a position to fully defend your country’s position and debate confidently at the conference. Intensive research on the topics can lead to a very rewarding MUN experience.
Following the international news on hot topics can always be a first and easy step to start preparing. However, for some topics you’ll need a lot more than the mainstream news. Read the study guides, start looking up academic papers, books, blogs, etc. When you think you know your topic, then the fun part begins: linking your countries policy and interests with both topics.
Step 4: Position Paper
When you have completed all of the steps mentioned above, the last step is to put your knowledge into a position paper.
The position paper is a one or two page document that is an concrete and detailed overview of your knowledge of the topic and the position your country plans to take during the sessions. It typically includes three main points: background of the topic, past national and international actions and your country’s policy and possible solutions.
The deadline for this position paper is usually set before the start of the conference.