On 12 June 2014 in Lisbon, Portugal, Mawlana Hazar Imam highlighted the significance of effective dialogue in building bridges across diverse frontiers and combating a clash of ignorance. In line with the Imam’s emphasis on the power of dialogue in uniting humanity and offering pathways towards resolving conflict, the Aga Khan Education Board for the United Arab Emirates presents the Ismaili Youth Model United Nations (IYMUN).

“As I observe the world, I am struck by the insufficiency of well-informed debate, of richer dialogue, of deeper education in our quest to avoid human conflict,” Hazar Imam said during an acceptance address for the North-South prize. “Some have called this a clash of civilisations — I think it is, essentially, a clash of ignorance.”  

Model United Nations (MUN) is an educational simulation of the United Nations in which participants can put into practice their learnings about diplomacy, international relations, and the United Nations itself. MUN involves participants in public speaking, debating, and negotiation and providing opportunities for engaging in critical thinking, teamwork, and leadership. This experience overall allows participants to develop a deeper understanding of current worldwide issues — including a clash of ignorance — and their role in combating these as global citizens.

Ismaili Youth Model United Nations is a MUN conference organised for young members of the Jamat aged 12-18 years. IYMUN launched in 2019 with an inaugural meeting in the United Arab Emirates at the Ismaili Centre Dubai. IYMUN follows The Hague International Model United Nations (THIMUN) rules of procedure. This year, the conference will be held virtually as an international edition open to Ismaili youth from around the globe.

The platform will allow an opportunity to debate prevalent global issues and collaborate with motivated Ismaili youth worldwide to form resolutions. Zain Sadruddin, who was awarded best delegate for the First General Assembly at IYMUN 2019, following an impressive performance as a delegate of the United States remarked, “With the THIMUN structure, tackling resolutions head-on gave me a newfound appreciation for the conference as it shed light on the key values of empathy and determination upon which the United Nations was established. IYMUN was an incredible experience that provided me with multiple perspectives into how intergovernmental organisations aim to resolve global issues.”

This year’s conference will be held virtually in October 2021 and will cater to multiple time zones. The session will include an opening ceremony, training days for student officers, delegates, committee sessions, and a closing ceremony.

Registration for the Delegates is now open. To register, visit the IYMUN website or email [email protected] for more information.