- Posted March 22, 2013 by
Young Diplomats Gather at the City of Four Seasons a Day
Almost 2,000 delegates gathered at Melbourne for the World Model United Nations 2013, held by the Harvard University with Monash University and RMIT. More than 80 countries are represented, and the delegates will engage in more than 20 committees of the United Nations and beyond.
The Melbourne WorldMUN continues the great tradition of the 'WorldMUN Spirit', engaging students in academic debate, trying to solve the biggest global problems. This year turns out, however, to be a bit more special, since for the first time, this event is endorsed by the United Nations Economic and Social Council for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP).
My team, consists of ten people, represented one of the unlikeliest countries: the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (otherwise known as North Korea). We engaged in five committees: the Disarmament and International Security (DISEC), the Social, Humanitarian, and Cultural (SOCHUM), the Special, Political, and Decolonization (SPECPOL), the Legal Committee, and the World Health Organization (WHO). This team considers, of course, that WorldMUN is like playing while working: diplomacy is an art in itself, and for most of the (seasoned) delegates (at least), Model UN is an opportunity to have fun through debating and negotiating, making concessions when needed while working to protect the national interest of each represented states.
Often, though, the 'play' side appears to be stronger, due to the number of social events available during the evening. From amusement parks to night clubs, WorldMUN is as fun as it is busy. Draft Resolutions negotiated in the middle of some shots of alcohol, working papers while lunch, and voting procedures in the middle of some dances. Delegates swap flowers, along with some MUN-style pick up lines, such as, "I want to moderate my caucus" or "I want to yield my remaining time just to be with you" (actually written by a colleague of mine).
The WorldMUN features some other events, including guest speakers, including the Honorable Gareth Evans (former Foreign Minister of Australia) during the opening ceremony. The crazy thing, however, is not about the speakers: instead, it is the weather. Melbourne is notoriously known as "the city of four seasons a day", which we experience first hand: it is autumn in Melbourne, and weather varies from bright sunshine to great rain, from as low as 11˚C to above 20˚C.
Model United Nations has been not just 'play at work' but also 'play and work' for many of its avid lovers. Since the WorldMUN is the 'Global Olympics of Model United Nations' due to its size, magnitude, and plurality, the Model United Nations has always been a very fun experience. WorldMUN is one of the greatest, clearly, and something to cherish upon.
(photo credit: Daniel Sihar)