The Model United Nations of Lübeck (MUNOL) is an annual student conference simulating the work of the United Nations (UN). Like the real United Nations, MUNOL deals with issues concerning world politics and tries to resemble the UN as authentically as possible. Therefore important UN bodies such as the General Assembly, including 1st to 6th Committee, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the Human Rights Council and further commissions are simulated.
MUNOL particularly addresses high school students from the age of sixteen from all over Europe. Several schools from different European countries like the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Belgium, Italy, Hungary, Turkey and Poland attend the conference every year. Welcoming a lot of delegates that have never participated in MUNs before, MUNOL has become a conference with a clear focus on these so-called "first timers". Thus, it is not necessary for any participating student to already have any prior MUN experience before attending the conference in Lübeck.
Nonetheless, as English is the official MUNOL language every student is required to be able to speak freely in this language and preferably also to use basic rhetoric. Furthermore every student is expected to dress formally according to the official dress code.
The MUNOL conference simulates ten different committees of the United Nations, focusing on international security, economics, globalization, environmental policy and other aspects of international politics. MUNOL’s issues on the agenda are subject to annual revisions, which always make the conference as up-to-date as possible.
The majority of participating students will be acting as delegates for their assigned countries, either in a committee, in a commission or in a council. They do research on their appointed countries’ political positions towards international policies prior to the plenary assembly. At the conference itself the students take part in formal debates representing their country’s point of view in their respective forums, as well as trying to make compromises or solving problems during the "lobbying process". Writing resolutions and holding speeches are the major activities each participant is to carry out.
Nowadays MUNOL is very established and one of Germany’s most international MUN conferences with almost fifty percent of all 350 annual participants being from foreign countries. A one hundred member staff team takes care of the conference’s entire organisation and administration.
The Model United Nations of Lübeck usually takes place at the “Thomas-Mann-Schule” in Lübeck, a German secondary school, and lasts for six days at the end of April or the beginning of May.
The conference is patronized by the MUNOL Association, a charitable incorporated society with the goal of providing political education for young people. Ever since the first session was held in 1998, the Model United Nations of Lübeck has been organized entirely by high-school students and few alumni. It is exclusively financed through donations and the very small conference fee.
MUNOL means a week full of new experiences for every participant. It offers the opportunities to improve English skills, to earn new knowledge about international politics and to foster international understanding.
Creating awareness for highly topical issues and problems around the world is one of MUNOL’s main goals. During the last years the organisers have increased their efforts to raise special awareness on the environment as well as the threats our planet and its resources is facing today. Therefore MUNOL is trying to take steps to ensure that the conference is as eco-friendly and eco-efficient as possible in order to minimise the negative environmental effects it might have.
Among others the following steps have been taken towards a greener conference:
1) usage of recycled paper
2) two-sided printing
3) waste separation
4) fair trade products like coffee
5) promotion of carpools
6) encouraging the usage of public means of transport by providing discounted bus tickets
7) the conference is mainly held in a building which has been completely energetically redeveloped
8) support of environmental organisations
MUNOL 2013 is completely devoted to the issues related to environmental problems, as this year’s conference theme is “Resources for Life”. While the depletion of resources is continuing at an alarming rate, some of them like trees and water are essential for our survival. The increasing scarcity of resources calls for action and so does our conference theme 2013.
A constant striving towards decreasing MUNOL’s strain on the environment is a high priority to everyone involved. For this reason any ideas related to eco-friendly improvements would be much appreciated. Just send an e mail to firstname.lastname@example.org !