MAU: Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Model African Union?

The Model African Union is a simulation conference that lets high school students role play as delegates to the African Union, where they represent one of the 54 African countries. Joining the Model African Union program requires a two-part commitment by students and teachers.
1. In school and at home, students research and develop an understanding of the national interests and issues of the country they represent.
2. At the Model African Union Conference, students come prepared to negotiate, debate and reach consensus on some of Africa’s most urgent and life-impacting issues.
Students might propose a resolution for peace and security in West Africa; tackle the issue of urban youth unemployment in Africa’s largest cities; or address sustainable agriculture in the context of population growth.


Where and when is the Conference?

MAU is usually held in the spring semester during normal school hours at the University of Pittsburgh's Oakland Campus. In 2024, the conference will be held on April 12th in person and will have a virtual option. You can register here! Registration is due by January 15, 2024.


What should students bring?

  • Laptop/tablet (something that can connect to WiFi & be used to contribute to resolutions on Google Docs)
  • Laptop/tablet charger
  • Scrap paper & pens
  • Water bottle


Why should students participate?

Students will:

  • Gain an understanding of African culture and history

  • ​Learn about and research issues affecting Africans

  • Improve negotiation, debate, and leadership skills

  • ​​Connect with new people and make new friendships


Which topics are discussed?

Topics from previous simulations include:

  • Peace and Security

  • Women, Gender, and Development

  • Youth Unemployment

  • Rural Economy and Agriculture

  • Civil Society

  • Public Health Systems and Covid-19 Responses


What is the role of a faculty advisor?
The faculty advisor is a teacher who leads and is responsible for a team or teams of students at the MAU conference. The advisor assists students with their research, serves as a coach during the conference, and coordinates the logistics of attending the conference.


How should I prepare for the MAU? 
Get a good sense of the country you represent. You can do research on some of these topics (and get more ideas from our Resources page):

  • The country's type of government, and how often the country has elections

  • The strength or weakness of the country's public health system

  • Does the country owe a lot in foreign debt? (You can find this at the World Bank here.)

  • What are the main religions and ethnic groups in the country?

  • Are there major armed conflicts happening in the country right now?

  • What are the major industries of the country?

Then you'll have a good idea of the positions you should take on the agenda items as a delegate of your country.
You'll also want to make sure you understand the role of the African Union committee you're a part of, if applicable. You can check the AU handbook here.


What is a resolution and how do I write one?

A resolution is a paper that has been passed by a committee that addresses a specific issue. During a committee session, resolutions are used to promote debate and find solutions to the issues being discussed. Resolutions not only acknowledge the issues that are being debated, but also present a series of steps that can be taken resolve the conflict. Writing resolutions can be challenging since they must appeal to a broad range of members with differing concerns to be passed. Here is an example resolution:

Resolution 2.1 
Sponsors:  Nigeria, Tunisia 
Signatories: Zambia, Mali, Kenya, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoir, Mozambique. 
On the pressing issue of Terrorism 

Recognizing the absolute necessity of cooperation of the entity African Union in the eradication of rampant terrorism 
Affirming the devastating Nature of such terrorism on not only AU but also non-AU Nations.   

The Executive Committee of the African Union hereby:   

  1. Support the consolidation of the anti-terrorist organizations into one united front; 

  1. Enacts a program against the availability of small arms and light weapons to terrorist  including : 

  1. Ban the cross-border sale of weaponry 

  1. Disallow the carrying of the arm by any except the military 

  1. Institutionalize a system of effective education and Aid to abolish the breeding grounds for terrorism involving:  

  1. Separating aid into different channels for each region, enabling better control of the direction of said aid 

  1. Expedite the importation of volunteers with developmental aid 

  1. Carry out the education of citizens through the building of schools and teaching by aforementioned volunteers.   

  1. Create and Ad hoc Committee to provide for the planning of education of youth and adults 

  1. Calls Upon the use of forced funds through debt relief and aid from international organizations