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How to Give the Perfect Opening Speech in MUN? Tips for Public Speaking?

Speeches are an important part of the Wevaluediplomacy Model United Nations (WVDMUN) Conference. They let you present your country’s position, ideas, solutions and help you win over delegates to work with you. Speeches let your present your ideas without intrusion as the committee will be listening to what you have to say. Oh, and there are awards for amazing speeches. Several misconceptions about speeches subsist in several MUNs. One common misconception is that speeches have a common, formalised mode of delivering, i.e. they follow a defined pattern. This document seeks to dispel these notions, and highlight recommended methods to adopt to ensure you deliver the best speeches at the conference.

Note – For the purpose of speeches, we refer to communication that deal specifically with the topics to be addressed by the committee.

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This is “it”. The speech on the topic to be deliberated upon – the 90-second speech. With this speech, you are able to introduce to the committee, your country’s position on the topic, the depth and extent of the topic, possible solutions, and importantly, sell your ideas and your attributes that will enable other delegates want to work with you. During the course of the conference, you should give a few of these speeches. Ideally, the average number of speeches you should give will depend on the size of the committee, and whether or not the motion to set the speaker’s time is utilized (increasing or reducing the speaker’s time). Since you will be required to give several speeches, you will have to know when to say what, using the tips which will be provided below. You should keep in mind that there is no “onesize-fits-all” format to writing and delivering your speech. You should do what works for you. To provide some tips to enable you get an idea on how to go about the process, you may want to include some or all of the following:

Your Country’s Position/Foreign Policy Objective

Always remember you are representing a country. As such, you have to make sure to let the committee know the what the country believes in with respect to the topic. E.g.

“Canada believes that tackling migration through illegal routes will reduce the mortality rates that subsist as a result of the situation”

“The Republic of Ireland strongly affirms that there is link between the poverty situation in the world and climate change” “Finland reaffirms her commitment towards reducing plastic pollution in the oceans”

In the examples above, we get an insight into what the country understands and believes the topics deal with, as well as what your country “feels” about the topic. It’s like telling us what you as a person stand for, but rather than using a personal qualifier, as in “I”, you speak with respect to the country you represent.

An Insight into the Situation

One thing you should know is statistics have power. Nobody can argue with facts. It would be bland if you were speaking about a conflict situation without providing statistics on how many people have been affected by affected by such conflicts; or telling us the importance of education of children without mentioning how many children are out of school.

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“From the 1950s up to 2018, an estimated 6.3 billion tons of plastic have been produced worldwide, of which only an estimated 9% has been recycled and another 12% has been incinerated”

“According to the United Nations Educational Scientific Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) Institute of statistics, 263 million children are currently out of school and 22% of them are of primary school age. This number is equivalent to a quarter of the population of Europe, which recognizes that 60% of youth, between 15 to 17, are not in school”

This solidifies whatever position you may adopt by showing us the depth of the situation. Keep in mind however, that not every topic may require statistics, but other kinds of facts may be presented.

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