The Model United Nations is designed to help participants learn about the international political system, global issues and the forces which determine a nation's foreign policy by simulating the real activities of the United Nations.
The Model United Nations simulates the activities of a United Nations body, usually the General Assembly and its committees or the Security Council. Student participants assume the roles of diplomatic representatives to the UN and consider items from the UN's agenda. They defend their assigned country's interests negotiating the solutions on global problems by utilizing the actual procedures of the United Nations.
Through the preparation process participants acquire knowledge about the United Nations, as well as a greater understanding of global issues and the complexities of international systems. Participants must research and study their assigned country's history, culture and foreign policies in order to be able to set positions and policy goals for the simulation. By preparing and participating in the Model United Nations students learn the skills of debate and negotiation, caucusing and consensus, persuasive writing and public speaking.
The Kansai High School Model United Nations is believed to be the first organized MUN conference aimed directly at high school EFL (English as a Foreign Language) students. The first conference was held in 1990 as a required project for third year students in Kyoto Gaidai Nishi High School's Course of International and Cultural Studies. This conference included 40 KGNHS students and 13 students from Kansai International High School in Toyonaka, Osaka. The two-day conference, held at Kyoto University of Foreign Studies, simulated the Commission on Human Rights and debated the agenda item of the Israel and Palestine Conflict. The conference went on to become an annual gathering of high school students studying EFL in Japan.
Unlike other MUN events around the world, the Kansai High School Model United Nations is a non-competitive MUN event.