How To Write a Model UN Position Paper

Are you gearing up for a Model United Nations (MUN) conference and feeling overwhelmed by the task of writing a position paper? Fear not! In this guide, we’ll walk you through the essential steps to craft a stellar position paper that will impress your fellow delegates and conference organizers.

Understanding the Purpose

Before delving into the nitty-gritty of writing your position paper, it’s crucial to understand its purpose. A position paper serves as a formal statement of your country’s stance on a particular issue being discussed in the committee. It’s your opportunity to showcase your research, and outline the main arguments you plan to flesh out over the course of the conference.

What A Position Paper Isn’t

A position paper is not:

A description of your personal feelings on the topic. You’re representing your assigned country and its official policies. So, for example: if you are the delegate from North Korea, a state with an official stance on increasing its supply of nuclear weapons, you may find yourself writing a position paper arguing for stances very different than the ones you personally hold on nuclear arms.

A resolution or final proposal. While your position paper should indicate the kinds of solutions you feel are best based on your country’s policies and history, it should not contain a laundry list of every proposal you eventually want to put into a resolution. Remember that the conference is a diplomatic exercise, and your position paper should signal to the committee that you’re ready and willing to work with others over the course of the conference.

A fiery stump speech. Depending on your assigned country, you may find that the arguments you make will be more or less bombastic than some other countries. For example – if the topic is “malnourishment in war zones” and you are representing a country with a large vulnerable population after recent conflict, you may want to emphasize just how important solutions are to your citizens. However, the position paper is a factual and official statement of policy – it is not the place for purple prose, rhetoric, or bluster.

Researching Your Country and Topic

  1. Know Your Country: Start by thoroughly researching the country you are representing. Understand its history, culture, political system, and foreign policy. Consider how these factors influence its position on the topic at hand.
  2. Understand the Topic: Dive deep into the topic assigned to your committee. Identify key stakeholders, past resolutions, and current global perspectives. Consider both the historical context and contemporary relevance of the issue.
  3. Explore Different Perspectives: Don’t limit yourself to one source of information. Consult a variety of reputable sources, including academic journals, government publications, think tank reports, and news articles. Be critical of the sources you use and prioritize credible information.

Structuring Your Position Paper

  1. Introduction: Begin with a concise introduction that outlines the topic, its significance, and your country’s general stance. Hook the reader with a compelling opening statement.
  2. Historical Background: Provide context by discussing relevant historical events, treaties, and resolutions related to the topic. Explain how these factors have shaped your country’s position.
  3. Current Situation: Analyze the current state of affairs regarding the topic. Highlight recent developments, challenges, and opportunities. Clearly articulate your country’s perspective and interests.
  4. Policy Recommendations: Offer some specific policy recommendations that align with your country’s position. Propose practical solutions, address potential concerns, and emphasize the importance of cooperation among member states.
  5. Conclusion: Summarize your key points and reiterate your country’s commitment to finding a resolution. End on a strong note that leaves a lasting impression.

Writing Tips for Success

  1. Be Concise and Clear: Avoid unnecessary jargon and convoluted sentences. Opt for clarity and precision in your writing to ensure your message is easily understood.
  2. Stay Objective: While advocating for your country’s interests, maintain a diplomatic tone and refrain from making inflammatory statements. Respect opposing viewpoints and focus on constructive dialogue. Avoid using “I”, instead referring to yourself by your country name.
  3. Cite Your Sources: Provide citations for all information and quotations used in your position paper. Follow a consistent citation style (e.g., APA, MLA) to lend credibility to your arguments.
  4. Proofread and Revise: Take the time to thoroughly proofread your position paper for grammatical errors, typos, and inconsistencies. Consider seeking feedback from peers or advisors to improve clarity and coherence.

Formatting and Length

It’s impossible to provide a single guide to formatting that applies to every single MUN conference, because different conferences have different rules and specifications. You should consult the materials provided by your conference, or contact the conference organizers, if you are unsure about specifics.

For many conferences, however, there is no single standard governing things like font size, length requirements, margins, paragraph structure, etc. Many conferences simply want each delegate to submit a position paper that addresses the points made above – historical background and official stance, current situation, and your recommendations for solutions. If your paper is clear, concise, and backed by verifiable research, it will get the job done well.


Writing a compelling position paper for a Model United Nations conference is a challenging yet rewarding endeavor. By conducting thorough research, structuring your paper effectively, and adhering to writing best practices, you can craft a document that showcases your diplomatic skills and enhances your MUN experience. Good luck, and may your position paper pave the way to diplomatic success!