The Art of Crisis


Compared to General Assemblies, Crisis committees are unique due to their lack of structure and each delegate having the abilities of their character or country they represent. If you are meant to represent the Minister of Finance in Merkle’s Cabinet then you have all the powers of that minister’s role, while if you are the head of a rebellion in Uruguay in the late 19th century, then you get all the powers associated with that individual. 

Powers of Crisis Characters

To exercise your powers you simply need to write a note to the crisis director stating your actions and signing your name. One example of this might be if you are Canada during the Cuban missile Crisis and you want nuclear weapons, you might write:

To: Crisis  From: Prime Minister of Canada, John Diefenbaker

I would like to increase the military budget from 2% to 3% of the GDP, using that extra money I would like to build a nuclear testing facility in northern Quebec and begin testing nuclear weapons; using what we learned in our involvement during the Manhattan Project. We will be using Canadian Uranium mined in the Northwest Territories. From this, I hope to create nuclear weapons.

That way Crisis will know what you are doing, how you want to do it and to what feasibility you are going to be able to do what’s written on your note.

You might also want to build upon your plans by then investing in the next step. For the example provided above, you might want supersonic bombers to drop your nukes, or Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles to carry the nukes to their target. The decision is up to you, just ensure you’re creative and have some fun with it. 


The two main strategies that can often be found in Crisis committees are front room and back room strategies. In the front room your goal will be to drive consensus regarding issues that will be popping up throughout the committee. Generally, directives that are passed will mean that the committee as a whole will be taking part in that action to solve the problem, yielding a better chance for success.

In the back room, you’ll want to almost constantly be writing notes to either the fellow delegates in your room, the other room (assuming you are doing a joint-crisis committee) or to crisis. Your goal will be to conspire with others to work against the committee or to try and solve problems by yourself. Common practices will be to say one thing in front of every other member of the committee and do the direct opposite in your notes, so be clever and tactical in your decision making.