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This is your FPA, Shridhar speaking. At last we are here on the eve before Model UN kicks off. I hope that all of you are just as excited as we are! I just wanted to give out some last minute advice regarding the conference.
1) Thank you to those who have submitted your papers. Myself and others have read through pretty much all of them, and they look excellent so far. Competition for the best position paper is certainly going to be difficult to chose from. For those of you who have not submitted them yet, do not fear, for you have until tonight to send them in. Late entries will be read, but will not be up for award consideration.
2) Finding the right building may be difficult for some of you, especially if it is your first time attending the conference. Basically you walk out of the LRT station into the bus loop, and then turn right. After that keep walking straight until you get to a loong field. The conference is held in CCIS, which is at the end of that long field; it is made up of glass, and it says CCIS on it. If these instructions are still unclear, which lets be honest they are, email here, and one of us will come find you. I will be checking this email in the mornings each day before Model UN starts in search of any lost delegations. Hopefully this will help your overall experience be much smoother.
3) For any last minute policy information, feel free to email me here, or talk to me after the first day tomorrow. I will be happy to help out!
See you tomorrow delegates!

Hello, delegates!

Today I will be talking a bit about our topic pertaining to the question of Indigenous Rights around the world. The issue I want to briefly touch on is compensation. How can we make sure that Indigenous rights are respected around the world without incurring causing any social unrest, or financial loss? Now our Vice-Chair, Anusha touched on this topic in her section, but I wanted to talk about it with a more global perspective.
Now this last part of the question is more important than what one would think. Usually, most of us in western countries have a progressive attitude towards the plight of the Indigenous people. Today’s thinking is more mindful of their culture, and we try to make sure that the mistakes of the past remain in the past. It is really important to keep in mind, however, that not all nations or individuals for that matter really care. You may find that many of the most powerful countries in the world, ones who would be screaming and shouting at issues such as global arms, will have little to no say on the issue. I really believe that this topic will be a harder one to come up with a tangible plan that countries around the world can implement. Keep in mind that many countries do not share the same level of concern for reconciliation, and even the ones that do might be hesitant if it means draining money from their national treasury.
For the reasons outlined above, I really do believe that coming up with the proposal, and even furthering that, one that gets passed, will be really difficult to do. Personal beliefs set aside, there are many conservative countries in the world, and agreements that seek to bind others will find themselves quickly defeated or shot down. Just my 2c on the issue, and the difficulties we have ahead.

Hello, delegates!

Today I will be talking a bit about Increasing Technology Around the World. Now many of you are probably wondering how you guys are supposed to analyze this. After all, we do expect delegations to come somewhat prepared for the conference. Countries do not generally have a technology “budget”, and as such, this will no doubt make it much harder to find and get numbers. Below I have some links that should make your life much easier (hopefully):
– Now this isn’t necessarily about science specifically, but it can be used as a helpful tool to see which countries prioritize spending.
– Not really recent, but at only 5 years old, it is still relatively useful
– This site is useful for comparison of quantitive data
– Very good intro to some of the issues we shall be discussing.
A word of caution must be given for sites like the one below:
If you’re using such sites, please make sure not to use hard data. Sources such as these are excellent for GENERALLY figuring out where your country resides in this debate. Make sure to look for objects of note such as citations, or academic writing when incorporating their use.
Let me know if you have any questions, and make sure to have fun!
Your Foreign Policy Analyst,
Shridhar Patel

Hey guys!

 

I’ve posed several questions for you, hopefully to get your ideas going and delve into some factors of the topics at question. Indigenous rights have also been, just that. Multitudes of questions and difficult ones at that. So here’s another question for you: How much does history influence the decisions made, versus how much should it influence these decisions?

 

It’s a fact that Indigenous peoples have had their rights blatantly disregarded and revoked over centuries, so truly, as much of the policies in responding to the protection is about reconciliation as much as it’s about solving the problems and issues that are extremely deep wounds, left raw over centuries. The historical aspect of evaluating these rights are so often overlooked. You’ve probably heard the argument of something happening in the past needing to be one that you “move on” from or “get over,” both, not possible with the acknowledgment of the very real intergenerational trauma that is suffered by Indigenous peoples worldwide. So what can be the solution? First, how does your country acknowledge the issues, and second, what are they doing to reconcile and move forward.

 

And of course, the perhaps overarching question. To what extent should these rights be protected?

 

Good luck

Anusha, Vice Chair.


Hey Delegates!

 

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a good break and are getting ready for the conference, it’s just around the corner now!

 

With that being said, make sure you’re being diligent about the focus you place on the topics in question, as they relate to your country. Obviously, it is vital to know your country’s policies, allies and standpoints on the issues pertaining to the topic inside and out, but if you notice that a particular topic is more of a focus than the other, try and delve deeper into it!

 

Technology is becoming a factor that definitely needs more of a look into, as we no longer live in a time where it can be simply overlooked. Not to hang onto the same subject I brought up a couple months ago regarding the election, I’m still bitter, but with the recent headlines of hacking and living in such a digital age that now threats and sovereignty are being influenced by technology, that puts us in a position to really decide: What are the pros and cons of introducing and expanding the level of technological development in the developing world? Keep in mind the implications of that expansion, including but not limited to its ties with freedom of the press and right to free speech. The increase in technology arguably makes these freedoms more accessible. So… How does your country feel about that?

 

Best of luck,

Anusha, Vice Chair.


Hey Delegates!

I hope everyone is having a fantastic week and is busy getting your homes ready for Christmas! I just wanted to share with you all a video I came across yesterday in a series known as Adam Ruins Everything. You can view the video on YouTube here.

As we move towards greater dependency on technology, it becomes evident that inventions such as the internet can benefit society immensely. From open access to billions of databases worldwide to instantaneous communications with just a few clicks, we are extremely fortunate to have reliable and fast internet access.

However, with the rapid growth of the internet in these past few years, it is becoming increasingly difficult for developing and third world nations to keep up with these advancements. Despite the obvious benefits that the internet could bring to these nations including international trade and increasing literacy rates, these nations do not have the capital or infrastructures to support a stable and reliable internet system. Perhaps it may take the collaborative efforts of many nations to come together to find a solution for this problem.

Anyways, that was just some food for thought. As this will be our last post until the new year, I hope you will all have a wonderful holiday and good luck on any midterms or finals you may have.

Alex Kwan

SOCHUM Chair

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Hello delegations!

Wow,does time fly by! We are rapidly approaching HSMUN 2017 and I hope that you all have atleast done some research on your respective countries’ policies in response to SOCHUM topics. The issues we will be discussing are poised to have great consequences in the 21st century, and it is important we reach an international consensus on increasing technological access and the rights of indigenous people around the world. I would like to spend a few minutes to touch on our first topic about technological access in developing countries.

An important thing to think about when thinking of this question would be who would be responsible for such development? Is it justifiable to make richer countries foot some of the bill? Should it be private companies being encouraged to create internet access? If so, from which nationality should these countries be? With the recent rise in the anti-globalization movements in America and Europe, should there even be an effort to “force” the richer countries to help the developing? There are many questions that need answers. Answers that you, the delegates, will be responsible for coming up.

Please do not forget to be realistic about your country’s position. You are representing a country, and personal opinions are not permitted.

Shridhar, Foreign Policy Advisor

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Hey all!

Though it’s still fairly early in the year, it’s never too early to start preparing and getting a grasp on the topics. Over the past several days I have no doubt that you’ve seen the news and heard about the current climate, not only in the U.S. but globally. With Brexit and now the outcome of the U.S. election, it’s definitely something that has relevance in everything– including the topics for the SOCHUM 2017 conference.

With topic two of the SOCHUM committee being The Question of the Rights of Indigenous People Around the World, maybe look into current events. The DAPL Pipeline protest has gained a lot of attention recently for the question of how much the government should be respecting the rights and requests of Indigenous peoples, among the other issues surrounding DAPL. Broaden your search, what effect does the election in the U.S. have on the rest of the world regarding this topic? Is it going to promote xenophobia and ignorance? Make America Great… Again? Before Europe colonized?

Just some things to think about as you prepare! Remember to be open and realistic about your country’s needs and the effects of these recent events on them!

Good luck!

Anusha, Vice Chair.

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Welcome to SOCHUM 2017!

I hope you all are excited about HSMUN just as much as we are! While there is still roughly four months to go until the conference, it is never too late to start researching and familiarizing yourself with our committee’s topics. This year, there will be two topics for SOCHUM: (1) Increasing Technological Access to Third-World Countries, and (2) The Question of the Rights of Indigenous People Around the World.

Although it might look like there is a lot to learn about these two topics, the HSMUN staff has conveniently provided you all with tonnes of resources on this website to help you get started. I would advise to not only check out our committee’s topic under the “SOCHUM” section, but also have a look at the ‘Students’ section to learn more about committee proceedings and position paper writing. As well, please feel free to email us at hsmun.sochum@gmail.com if you have any specific questions or concerns, and we will be glad to help you out.

Having said that, please keep an eye on this blogging section in the coming months leading up to the conference. The SOCHUM staff will be posting weekly blogs with information and topics to consider to help all of you become experts on your country’s foreign-policy by the time February rolls around!

Thank you for reading this blog and I look forward to meeting you all in a few months!

     Alex, SOCHUM Chair

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