Walking into a conference room before the beginning of the first session, every delegate knows that there are two types of people walking into that room with them: those who have a solution set and those who do not. While every MUNer has seen the latter prevail and win the coveted gavel, those with solutions are much more likely to edge out the competition. “Why?” you might ask.
Because at heart, Model United Nations is about solutions just as much as it is about the skill with which the delegates debate those solutions.
First, let’s tackle why those without reliable solutions lose. Most of the time a chair will not award the gavel to a delegate who is underprepared and lacks their own creative solutions. Now, just because a delegate doesn’t have solutions, does not mean that they are lazy. Often a delegate may have a compendium of research with them; however, they do not correctly apply this research to form implementable solutions. These delegates, while relevant during the beginning of the conference when the topic and general facts are being established, are often overpowered by delegates who hold appropriate solutions in the resolution writing phase. If this type of delegate were to merge extensive research which they have so painstakingly gathered with solutions that can be included in resolution papers, they would be much more influential in a room.
The second type of non-solution oriented delegates are the ones who walk into a conference thinking that they are simply going to wing it and use their MUN skills to make up for their lack of knowledge on the topic. These delegates, despite being incredibly talented speakers and tactful block leaders, simply do not have the meat to back up their aggressive ‘power del’ personas. Once the steam from their powerful speeches and unmoderated caucus manipulation runs out, they are left to sit in the corner and watch as the solution holding delegates dominate resolution writing. By the end of the conference, these delegates hold little ground to obtain a position on author’s panel and no power over their paper or their block, dooming them to imminent defeat.
Now that we have established why you will lose if you do not have solutions let’s discuss how having thought out, creative, and realistic solutions will help you win. First, having a solution set ready to go as you begin a conference, will calm your nerves and help you to focus on speaking, note writing, and block building rather than content. If you have a clear solution set that is closely associated with your country and your block, then you will be recognized by other delegates in the room as well as by the chair. Once the time comes to put pen to paper (or hands to keyboard) and write resolution papers, you will be able to contribute to actively and hopefully lead the process, thus securing your spot on the author’s panel and guaranteeing yourself an award at the end of the conference.