Harvard International Relations Council

Harvard International Relations Council

infobox Organization
name = Harvard International Relations Council

image_border =
size =
caption =
abbreviation = HIRC
formation = 1955
type = NGO
purpose = Education
headquarters =
location = Cambridge, MA
language = English
leader_title = President
leader_name = Kyle Fishman
main_organ = Board of Directors
affiliations = United Nations Department of Public Information
num_staff =

The Harvard International Relations Council (HIRC) is a non-profit organization that promotes awareness of International Relations. It is composed as several semi-independent but centrally funded programs, which each promote awareness of international relations in different ways. Those programs are Harvard Model United Nations (HMUN), Harvard National Model United Nations (HNMUN), the Harvard International Review (HIR), the Harvard Program in International Education (HPIE), Harvard Intercollegiate Model United Nations (ICMUN), and the Harvard International Relations on Campus (IRoC).

HIRC is the largest student organization at Harvard College.It is a registered 501(c)(3) [ [http://corp.sec.state.ma.us/corp/corpsearch/CorpSearchSummary.asp?ReadFromDB=True&UpdateAllowed=&FEIN=042581946 The Commonwealth of Massachusetts William Francis Galvin - Public Browse and Search ] ] that is run entirely by undergraduate students, and it is accredited as a Non-Governmental Organization with the United Nations Department of Public Information. [http://www.un.org/dpi/ngosection/dpingo-directory.asp?RegID=NA&CnID=US&AcID=-1&kw=&NGOID=4035]

Harvard Model United Nations

Harvard Model United Nations (HMUN) is one of the oldest Model United Nations simulations in the world. It was founded in 1953 when the Harvard student group that had been simulating the League of Nations since the 1920s decided to start a new simulation to reflect the new organization that had been established at the end of World War II. Every year, more than three thousand high school students from around the world attend the conference, which is currently held at the Boston Sheraton Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts. The conference has traditionally been held in early December, but due to a change in the academic calendar at Harvard, the conference will be moving to late January in the 2009-2010 academic year.

Like many Model United Nations simulations, HMUN offers committees in 5 categories:
* The General Assembly
* The Economic and Social Council
* Regional Bodies, like the African Union
* Specialized Agencies, which include unique standing committees like the Security Council and also include crisis committees, centered around a developing crisis.
* Substantive Support, which includes the Press Corps and the NGO program.

Delegates represent countries or famous individuals, and must work to solve problems through debate and compromise while still promoting the interests and policies of the nation or person they represent.


The Secretariat consists of the top-level officers of Harvard Model United Nations who oversee all branches and activities of the conference. All staff members of the conference, including the secretariat, are undergraduates at Harvard.

There are nine secretariat members: the Secretary-General, who is responsible for the conference as a whole, the Director-General, who is the administrative head of the conference, the Comptroller, who is responsible for conference finances, and six Under-Secretaries-General in the various branches of the conference: administration, business, substantive support, and the three substantive organs, the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Councils, and the Specialized Agencies.

The Secretary-General is elected annually in March by the Board of Directors of the IRC and the outgoing staff of the previous conference.He or she is traditionally a member of the past year's secretariat. The remaining secretariat members are appointed by the Secretary-General in coordination with the Secretary-General of HNMUN.

The Secretary-General of HMUN 2008 is Anthony Carlson '09, and his Secretariat includes Sameer Lakha '09 (Director-General), Jennifer Luo '09 (Administration), Jason Burke '09 (Business), Batool Ali '10 (Comptroller), Tom Yang '10 (Substantive Support), Zoey Orol '10 (General Assembly), Daniel Robinson '10 (Economic and Social Council), and Brad Seiler '10 (Specialized Agencies). [http://www.harvardmun.org]


Like most Model UN conferences, HMUN recognizes exceptional delegates and schools with awards at the end of the conference. Awards are given to the delegates who demonstrate strong preparation, excellent speaking skills, adherence to national policy, and exceptional abilities of compromise and negotiation, and they are awarded by the directors of each committee. The number of awards on a committee varies by size, but each committee gives out at least one of each of the following awards:
* Best Delegate
* Outstanding Delegate
* Honorable MentionUnlike many conferences, HMUN does not give Verbal Commendations.

Based on the number delegates receiving awards, awards are then given to the delegations that represent the best collection of delegates. The delegation awards, as well as their recipients at HMUN 2007, are:
* Best Large Delegation (more than 1 country): The Dalton School
* Outstanding Large Delegation: The Horace Mann School
* Best Small Delegation: The University of Chicago Laboratory Schools
* Best International Delegation: Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey

Harvard National Model United Nations

Harvard National Model United Nations or HNMUN is the longest running college-level Model United Nations simulation in the world and among the largest in the United States. HNMUN is an annual four day event held in February, composed of nearly three thousand university students of which almost half tend to be international students. The conference is held exclusively at the prestigious Boston Park Plaza Hotel in downtown Boston. This year's conference will be held from the 12th to the 15th of February, 2009.

Awards are conferred upon individual delegates in their respective committees and to delegations in the categories of best small, best large, and best international delegation.

Delegation winners for the 2008 conference were:

Best Small Delegation Florida International University representing the Republic of Cameroon.

Best Large Delegation University of Pennsylvania representing the Russian Federation..

Best International Delegation Universidad Católica Andrés Bello representing Germany.

HNMUN was first run in 1955, ten years after the formation of the real United Nations.


HNMUN is host to about 3000 university students from over 30 countries and so requires a large amount of planning by the Secretariat and staff hosting the event. Planning for the following year's conference starts as soon as the current one ends. Topics for debate must be chosen early so that study guides may be prepared and delegates may research their topics. Study guides are written by directors over summer and assistant directors come on board to write updates and provide support to the directors starting in October. The Secretariat works throughout the year on aspects including delegate recruiting and conference logistical planning. The Secretariat is also responsible for long-term strategic planning for the conference.


As with HMUN, the Secretariat oversees the administration of the conference. The Secretary-General is similarly elected, and appoints his or her Secretariat in coordination with the Secretary-General of HMUN. There are nine secretariat members: the Secretary-General, who is responsible for the conference as a whole, the Director-General, who is the administrative head of the conference, and seven Under-Secretaries-General in the various branches of the conference: administration, business, delegate relations, finance, and the three substantive organs, the General Assembly, the Economic and Social Councils, and the Specialized Agencies.

The Secretary-General of HNMUN 2009 is Andrew Fleeter '09, and his Secretariat includes Ritambhara Kumar '09 (Director-General), Alexandra Chen '10 (Administration), Sanjay Gandhi '10 (Business), Zehra Hirji '10 (Delegate Relations), Kerry Yang '11 (Finance), Michelle Cho '10 (General Assembly), April Qian '10 (Economic and Social Council), and Robert Hamlin '10 (Specialized Agencies). [ [http://www.hnmun.org Harvard National Model United Nations ] ]

Committee Structure

Model UNs follow the general structure of the UN but for logistical and educational reasons, the structure differs somewhat. HNMUN's structure is similar to most Model UNs but there are a few important differences.
* Only one resolution may be passed on each topic. This is meant to stress consensus and compromise between delegates. This is achieved by the fact that:
* Resolutions cannot be sponsored
* There are no "friendly" or "hostile" amendments, as there are no sponsors with whom to confer

Harvard Inter-Collegiate Model United Nations

Harvard International Review

Harvard Program in International Education

International Relations on Campus


* Model United Nations

External links

* [http://www.harvardmun.org/ Harvard Model United Nations]
* [http://www.hnmun.org/ Harvard National Model United Nations]


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