Click HERE for the UNESCO topic guide. 

The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization pursues peace through the unity of human morals and reason in five major program areas: education, the natural sciences, the social/human sciences, culture, and communication/information. UNESCO wants to bring nations together by mobilizing for education, building intercultural understanding, pursuing scientific cooperation, and protecting freedom of expression.


Topic A: Sustainable Cultural Tourism

Sustainable cultural tourism affirms the necessity of tourism as a stimulant for economic growth and development, but recognizes the inherent risks of tourism transforming a native culture to nothing more than a commodity. Working to find a balance between this necessary economic growth and preservation of native cultures is essential to the mission of UNESCO.

Topic B: Gender Equality in Research

Women make up a small 28 percent of research professionals in the STEM field as a result of their limited schooling and funding opportunities. In addressing the lack of gender equality in research, this committee will be actively working to increase the participation of women in this discipline, therefore bridging a harmful gap in the STEM field. This focus on advancing the rights of women executes the objectives of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Topic C: Human Capital Flight

Brain drain occurs when highly-skilled workers emigrate from their country of training to countries that provide better opportunities in their respective fields. However, this implicates costs on the infrastructure and economies of the countries that they leave due to the loss of potential innovation that is vital in efforts towards development.


Lauren Tolbert, UNESCO Chair

1) What are your hobbies?

Procrastinating, watching a lot of YouTube, and baking gluten-free cookies.

2) Why do you participate in Model UN?

I participate in Model United Nations because it makes me happy to see young people just like me take an interest in international affairs. When we all come together, we make the world a better place and I am honored to be a part of it. Also, MUN just makes life fun.

3) What would your theme song be?

“Imagine” by John Lennon.

4) What is your favorite quote?

“The only disability in life is a bad attitude.” ― Scott Hamilton

5) What is your favorite SHSMUN memory?

Running into Karlyn Simcox during officer interviews and not knowing we would be chairs together. She’s pretty great.