Indian model United Nations was conceptualized in 2001 jointly by the Chairman of Ryan International Group of Institutions Dr. A.F. Pinto and Managing Director Mrs. Grace Pinto. Their aim was to provide students with an avenue that allowed them to go beyond the traditional learning of oratorical rhetoric and public speaking in school. A replication of international diplomacy, combined with the vigor of classical debating, was the perfect answer for such an exercise. This meant that students would be able to learn more about issues from authentic sources and gain a more realistic perspective on each one of them, before going on to debate them. By aligning positions on the basis of foreign policies of their respective countries, and bringing in the need for lobbying, another element of nuance, a metaphorical shade of grey was added to the usual black and white positions of for and against in a classic debating paradigm.
Another facet that appealed enormously to the founders was the student run nature of the activity, instead of bringing in teachers or outsiders as judges for a debate, here was an activity where some among the participants themselves could pass a rigorous and competitive testing system to become moderators and judges of the entire debate. The beauty of this arrangement is that students are often most outspoken in their ideas and views among their peers, by replacing the often overbearing personas of eminent personalities with their peers, a fair amount of radical romanticism was allowed to blossom, furthering debate and dissent. In addition, by giving everyone else in the room a further prize to look up to, i.e. a spot on the Executive Board in future conferences, a dynamism was invoked to an activity that would otherwise become rather morbid for those who had secured the pole position once or twice. The Executive Board in turn was made accountable by the moral obligation of maintaining their standing among their peers and the constant competition in retaining their seat at subsequent conferences. During the conference, they were accountable for their performance to the Secretary General, usually the most accomplished student at the conference who had to undergo even higher benchmarks to make it to the position. Being on the Executive Board was a training in leadership, and the journey through MUNs was aimed at providing that training.
Another aspect of dynamism was the constantly evolving nature of topics and committees that could be simulated, ensuring that repetition was largely impossible. By linking the entire activity to real world events in real time, students were placed in an ever changing environment and often found positions evolving days before the event, this ensured that they always attempted to stay on top of the news, an asset that can be scarcely undervalued in today’s age.
INMUN was thus aimed at perfecting the traits of leadership and enabling its participants to leave school as confident, informed and well-read individuals who possessed the ability to compete and settle easily in the outside world. The student run nature of the conference did exactly that. This was the primary motivation and ideology behind this conference and to have imagined this at a time when this country still conceived school education to be about clearing entrance examinations speaks volumes about the foresight of those who planned and executed it. The bold idea of our founders has been vindicated today when almost all schools and colleges in this country have had some experience of the activity and the activity ranks at one of the most common debating platforms in the country. Ryan International Group of Institutions is indeed proud to have introduced this concept in India.