SMART Operatives

While BMUN does not award explicit grades for resolutions, it's important for delegates to understand the criteria under which we evaluate resolutions in order to factor them properly into awards decisions. Aside from basic grammatical and formatting standards, we evaluate resolutions using the S.M.A.R.T. framework, which outlines five characteristics of well-designed resolutions.

 
 

To best understand what a S.M.A.R.T. operative looks like, let's follow one as it goes from being a basic operative to a S.M.A.R.T. operative. Here is our base operative:

  1. Recommends people eat more nutritious food;

Specific

Resolutions should be simplistically written and clearly define what you are going to do. There is no such thing as too much detail!

Specific is the who, what, when, where, why, and how of the S.M.A.R.T. model. We should be able to clearly understand who is responsible for acting on recommendations by the committee, what actions are being taken, when the actions should be taken or their time horizons, where action is going to be taken, why the action is going to be taken (which should be highlighted in your preambulatory clauses), and how those means will be taken and funded.

Are you looking to an NGO to fix the problem? Which NGO? What are they gonna do? How long is the project going to take? In which region of the world?

You want to set up a sub-committee to deal with the issue? Which
countries/what kinds of representatives or experts make up the
panel? What part of the problem are they overseeing? What’s their
timeline? In which region of the world?

When we specify, our operative becomes:

  1. Recommends people eat more nutritious food;

What type of food?

  1. Recommends people eat more fruits and vegetables;

Which people?

  1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index
    of <5
    eat more fruits and vegetables;

 


Measurable

A resolutions' goals should be measurable so that you have tangible evidence that you have accomplished the goal. Usually, an entire operative clause is a measure for the resolution, but there are usually several short-term or smaller measurements built into the operative.

How will the progress of this solution be tracked? How do we know if it’s working? What metrics are accurate in determining if the solution is successful?

Including a measurement, our operative becomes:

  1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index
    of <5
    eat more fruits and vegetables;

What is the timeline for this?

  1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index
    of <5
     increase fruit and vegetable consumption by one cup per month;

The metric is counting the servings – is this accurate at assessing whether malnourishment is decreasing? Or do we need something better like random blood tests of people? These are things to consider when adding measurements to your operative.


Actionable

Actionable describes what will help make this solution happen. What resources are you going to use? Who is going to provide those resources? What responsibilities are you imposing on each region?

To make our operative actionable, we have to specify our operative:

  1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index of <5 increase fruit and vegetable consumption by one serving per month;

Where? How?

  1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index of <5 increase fruit and vegetable consumption by one serving per month, with guidelines per region as follows:
    a. North America: strawberries and kale,
    b. Central America: bananas,
    c. Etc.
    d. Etc.
    e. Etc.;

Realistic

Operatives have to be realistically feasible. When writing an operative, consider the funding and scale of the project, the sociopolitical climate in the region the solution is to be implemented, and whether or not the UN would really do what you're proposing.

Often, delegates irresponsibly leverage NGO's and unrealistic GDP commitments to make their resolutions feasible. Think about what is realistically available to your delegation.


    Time-bound

    Operatives should be linked to a timeframe that creates a practical sense of urgency, or results in tension between the current reality and the vision of the goal. Without such tension, the goal is unlikely to produce a relevant outcome. Implementing too quickly can cause problems and implementing too slowly can drag out the problem or become expensive.

    Adding time to our operative finally makes it:

    1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index of <5 increase fruit and vegetable consumption by one serving per month, with guidelines per region as follows:
      a. North America: strawberries and kale,
      b. Central America: bananas,
      c. Etc.
      d. Etc.
      e. Etc.;

    What is the overall time period?

    1. Recommends that people with a malnourishment index of <5 increase fruit and vegetable consumption by one serving per month over the period of a year, with guidelines per region as follows:
      a. North America: strawberries and kale,
      b. Central America: bananas,
      c. Etc.
      d. Etc.
      e. Etc.;

    As you can see, our original operative,

    1. Recommends people eat more nutritious food;

    has transformed significantly. Creating robust operatives for your resolution will make it stand out to the chairs as one that has been considered from many angles and through many lenses. Intelligently crafted resolutions distinguish good delegates from great ones, and are often the result of solid research