If you would like to post your proposed resolution, please send it by email to the Secretary General (firstname.lastname@example.org)
What is a Resolution?
The United Nations uses resolutions to express its opinion on issues, to make recommendations on how to address situations, and to apply political pressure on member-states to comply with obligations or expectations agreed upon by the international community.
A resolution is a document composed of a series of clauses, each of which is roughly a couple of lines long. A resolution will contain two types of clause. The first is called a preambular clause. Preambular clauses provide context either by summarizing the background to an issue or by articulating the concerns that are motivating the adoption of the resolution. The second type of clause is the operative clause. This is where the organization states what it thinks should be done. A typical resolution will thus begin with a number of preambular clauses and then follow with a series of operative clauses.
To see what a resolution looks like, let's take a silly example. Imagine that your family wants to pass a resolution in response to a problem created by your neighbours' beagle, that howls all night long. You might draft the following resolution which has two preambular clauses and two operative clauses:
The two preambular clauses explain what has led your family to adopt this resolution. The two operative clauses make concrete suggestions as to what should be done.
to the Resolutions
You can use this approach with specific points of your foreign policy, and by the time you to JPHMUN you may have several clauses to propose to the committee.
of a Resolution
This operative clause begins with the word "Urges." There are certain terms which are used at the beginning of clauses in order to communicate more clearly what the objective of the clause is. This clause is intended to apply a certain degree of pressure on other states to sign and ratify a particular treaty. Some states may wish to make the statement stronger by using an introduction like "Calls Upon." Others may wish to make it weaker by using "Invites" or "Encourages." The difference is one of emphasis. In diplomatic language, the weaker wording emphasizes that each state has the choice whether or not to sign the treaty, while the stronger wording emphasizes that there is an expectation on the part of the international community that every state should sign it.
Below is a list of verbs which can be used to begin operative clauses.
Below is a list of participles which can be used to begin preambular clauses.
Once a Working Paper has received the required number of sponsors and signatories (see Rules of Procedure), and has been approved by the Director, one of the Sponsors can then introduce it as a Draft Resolution. At JPHMUN, only one Draft Resolution can be considered by a committee at a time. This means that once a Draft Resolution is introduced, all of the committee's debate must be relevant to that Draft Resolution until a vote is taken on it. This does not mean, however, that once a Draft Resolution has been introduced, all of the work done on other Working Papers has been for nothing. Remember that you are free to propose amendments, both friendly and unfriendly, to any Draft Resolution. Delegates often take ideas expressed in other Working Papers and use them to formulate amendments. If a majority of the members of the committee agree with you, your amendment will be integrated into the Draft Resolution on the floor.
The Format of
Finally, remember that preambular clauses end with a comma, while operative clauses end with a semicolon. There is only one period in a Resolution, and it comes at the end. This means that a Resolution is really one very long sentence.
The sample Resolution below serves as an example both of proper format, and of a well-written Model UN Resolution:
of the General Assembly
Sponsors: Canada, France, Egypt, Japan, Brazil
Recalling that the Charter of the United Nations seeks to protect the security of states from other states,
Recognizing that the threat to state security in the current era comes from non-state actors as well as states,
Realizing that non-state actors may pose threat to states in matters of information technology,
Further realizing that the use of information warfare precludes in most instances a military response,
Concluding therefore that the use of information warfare tends to reduce the defenses of states and to reduce their security,
2. Requests that the IRTC submit recommendations to define information warfare and to define it as a crime in the framework of the United Nation's Convention Against Crime,
3. Recommends that the IRTC review the civilian/combatant distinction in the Geneva Conventions in light of known and potential practices of information warfare with a view to recommend its reformulation to realize greater protection of citizen civilians from the severe effects of information warfare by considering these effects as ware crimes and/or crimes against humanity,
4. Further recommends that the IRTC review the Wassenaar Agreement with a view to recommending measures that balance the interests of trade and the interests of security in encryption software.
**Notice the rationale inherent in the structure of this Resolution. The first preambular clause grounds the Resolution in basic principles shared by all member states. Preambular clauses two through four provide an increasingly specific account of the nature of the problem. The operative clauses all point to fairly specific actions the Committee would like to see taken. Note how they refer to specific UN conventions and other specific agreements (the Wassenaar Agreement). This is a reflection of the need for Resolutions to be solidly grounded in the facts and history of the issue.