– Nicholas Pearson –
When it comes to a Model UN Conference, researching your country in-depth should be one of your top priorities. Whether it’s information on your country’s customs, officials, or policies, every bit is important, and you should collect as much relevant information as possible. Without this data, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, to participate in discussions and debate during your committee sessions. And while collecting enough information may seem like a daunting task, once you form a plan it becomes a simple duty of diligence. Both the United Nations website and the World News page on CNN should be good places for you to start. To visit these websites, simply click on the name of either domain above.
The first step in researching a country is getting a binder to put your notes and facts in. A binder is immensely useful as you can constantly fill it with any new information that you discover. Your next step should be setting the United Nations website as your laptop or home computer’s homepage, in order to receive real-time updates of world news. You should search your country in the site’s search engine in order to find out the latest news, and if you think it will be useful, note any key data and put it in your binder. Do not be afraid to save information; you can always throw surplus information out, but you cannot go back in time to write something down.
Another tip to remember: the internet is your friend. Search your country, your country’s officials, and anything else you can think of. Check Wikipedia for information, Google any facts you need to verify, but make sure that you supplement your internet info with real-life sources. Visit your library and check out any books that could help you in your research. Many times, libraries will have information in books that you didn’t think to look for online, such as old articles, or past events that you lacked knowledge of. Also, make sure you sort all your material in a cohesive and easy-to-use form. Accessible information is just as important as the amount of data that you have. For more information on how to research your country visit this website.
Lastly, research your country’s allies and enemies. This research does not have to be as in-depth and encompassing as before, but it is good to know what kind of people your country deals with. Any major policies that an ally country has can show what things that your country deems acceptable, especially if they have a close relationship. Ally countries can have different accounts of events that help you build a better picture of who you are representing. The same goes for enemies. What does this country do that your country disagrees with? What actions have they taken that are against your country’s beliefs? Anything that assisted in sparking animosity between the two countries will tell you what your country does or doesn’t better than the information willingly provided to you.
The best way to research your country is to do it often and to do it well. You may discover that learning about another place is interesting and fun. Write down or print out as much information as you can, and keep it neat and organized. Do not overwhelm yourself, if you have put in a quality amount of research and feel burnt out, stop. You do your best and most comprehensive research when you are fresh. Finally, never doubt the need for information, or the power that knowledge has. When you are in the middle of a session and can pull up the exact tidbit you needed to help formulate a working paper or resolution, feel free to give yourself a smile and pat on the back.