Caucusing, or informal debate, is an important part of the Model UN simulation because it provides an opportunity for delegates to collaborate, negotiate and formulate draft resolutions. During a Model UN conference, caucuses can be either moderated or unmoderated.
When a committee holds a moderated caucus, the Chair calls on delegates one at a time and each speaker briefly addresses the committee. During an unmoderated caucus, the committee breaks for a temporary recess from formal proceedings so that delegates can work together in small groups. To hold a caucus, a delegate must make a motion and the committee must pass the motion.
Many delegates prefer to speak during a moderated caucus rather than being placed on the speaker’s list. In a moderated caucus, speakers are usually able to convey one or two key points to the entire committee or share new ideas that have developed through the course of debate. A delegate sometimes chooses to make a motion for a moderated caucus if his or her name is close to the end of the speakers list. By speaking in a moderated caucus, delegates are able to address the committee much earlier.
In most cases, more than half of committee time is used for unmoderated caucusing. Many delegates feel this is the easiest way for them to collaborate and start to formulate draft resolutions.
Go to tips for effective caucusing.