United Nations Commission on Science & Technology for Development (UNCSTD)
Chairs: Enrica Kumar & Reese Conway
Topic A: Genetic Editing in Humans
Genetic editing in humans involves the editing of specific parts of a genome. It is used in two main ways: Gene Therapy and Germline Editing. Gene therapy involves editing the somatic cells of a child or adult to treat a disease or disorder, such as sickle cell anemia and cancer. Germline editing involves editing the DNA of an embryo, sperm, or egg. This is more controversial because the changes would be passed down to that person’s offspring. Many countries have banned human gene editing, but scientists continue to pursue this technology. In our debate, the delegates will discuss the social and political aspects of this topic and determine how the United Nations should be involved in the continuation of this technology.
Topic B: Monitoring the Use of Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence is generally identified by the ability of technology to make decisions and reason at the same level as a human. Many social and political issues have risen regarding artificial intelligence, including the possibility of jobs being lost to technology and privacy and the wealth disparity that would occur when businesses have less workers and spend less money on their employees’ wages. The delegates must debate the ethics of artificial intelligence and determine how the United Nations should regulate its usage in modern society.