Committee Session: How it works and What to expect, Size of committees

Committee Sessions

How it works

Delegates will begin participating as an ambassador of a Member State once they are at the Montessori Model United Nations Conference. Montessori teachers and alumni serve on the Bureau to help guide the delegates throughout their usage of the ‘Rules of Procedure’ (delegates will raise their placards to make motions for different actions). The Bureau will do introductions, take roll call and establish quorum.* Quorum is the minimum number of delegates required for the committee to meet.

What to expect

Once quorum has been established the committee will move immediately to the Speaker’s List. At MMUN conferences, the agenda is preset as is the speaker’s list based on the order that position papers are received. Delegates will make speeches explaining their country’s foreign policy and their proposed solutions, and after hearing all of the  speeches, delegates can choose to move into discussion through either formal or informal consultation. Formal consultation is where the Bureau calls on delegates who raise their placards to make a brief comment whereas in an informal consultation, delegates are free to roam the room to debate with others and look for allies (especially in their regional bloc) to write a draft resolution together.

Once a draft resolution has been submitted and accepted by the bureau, the committee moves into line-by-line review. The Bureau will allow the sponsors – the primary authors – of the resolution to present it to the entire committee. More debate may occur, or amendments may be made to the draft resolutions during the line-by-line review process. Delegations are searching for consensus but if one cannot be reached, the delegates will vote on which resolutions to pass. A simple majority is required for a resolution to pass. Delegations may also motion for a division of the proposal if there is one clause that has an objection. In the Security Council, at least nine votes and no veto are required for a binding resolution to pass.

Size of committees

The size of the committee depends on the number of countries represented at the actual committee at the United Nations. At Montessori Model UN conferences the number of countries represented may be as small as 15 in Security Council and 45 in DISEC. (Disarmament and International Security Committee)

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