The final results of discussion, writing and negotiation are resolutions—written suggestions for addressing a specific problem or issue. A draft resolution is a completed resolution that is to be handed in to the chairs, and debated as a whole resolution before being voted upon. Each draft resolution is one long sentence with sections separated by commas and semicolons. The subject of the sentence is the body making the statement. The preamble and operative sections then describe the current situation and actions that the committee will take.

In order for a draft resolution to be submitted to the chair, it must satisfy the following requirements:

a. The resolution must have perambulatory and operative clauses

i. Perambulatory clauses set the foundations for the resolution’s argument. They serve to cite historical facts, precedents, and statements about the purpose of action. In other words, they help explain why the committee is addressing this topic. All perambulatory clauses should begin with a present participle and end with a comma.

ii. Operative clauses are the policies that the resolution is designated to create. They are used to explain what the committee will do to address the issue. Operative clauses being with a verb (which is called an operative phrase) and end with a semicolon. Unlike perambulatory clauses, operative clauses must be numbered and must follow some logical or chronological order. The last clause ends with a period, signifying the end of the resolution.

iii. Please refer to the below list of perambulatory and operative phrases.

b. Sponsors and Authors: There must be one main submitter, and 2 – 3 co-submitters as wanted. All submitters (main and co) are later required to vote for the resolution.

c. Signatories are delegates who sign on that they wish to debate the resolution; however by signing on to a resolution they are not committing to voting for it. In committees with 15 delegates or less, signatories are not required. In committees with 25-51 people, draft resolutions must have 10 signatories. In committees with 52-60 delegates, draft resolutions must have 18 signatories. The President reserves the right to intervene according to the situation in the committee.

Preambulatory Clauses

The preamble of a draft resolution states the reasons for which the committee is addressing the topic and highlights past international action on the issue. Each clause begins with a present participle (called a preambulatory phrase) and ends with a comma. Preambulatory clauses can include:

  • References to the UN Charter
  • Citations of past UN resolutions or treaties on the topic under discussion
  • Mentions of statements made by the Secretary-General or a relevant UN body or agency
  • Recognition of the efforts of regional or nongovernmental organizations in dealing with the issue
  • General statements on the topic, its significance and its impact.

Operative Clauses

Operative clauses offer solutions to issues addressed earlier in a resolution through the perambulatory section.  These clauses are action oriented and should include both an underlined verb at the beginning of your sentence followed by the proposed solution.  Each clause should follow the following principals:

  • Clause should be numbered
  • Each clause should support one another and continue to build your solution
  • Add details to your clauses in order to have a complete solution
  • Operative clauses are punctuated by a semicolon, with the exception of your last operative clause which should end with a period