About Carleton MNATO
Founded in 2002, Carleton Model NATO is an annual student-run and organized conference/simulation hosted by Carleton University’s Norman Paterson School of International Affairs in Ottawa, Canada. The annual event takes place every winter in the nation’s capital.
The unique four-day conference/simulation brings together over 100 students from across Canada to debate the most pressing transatlantic and international security issues. The core of the event is an intensive and immersive two-day simulation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization decision-making and crisis management. By assuming the role of NATO member state representatives, students gain a rich and unique understanding of Alliance politics, priorities and challenges facing NATO as well as a much deeper understanding of critical international security issues and their solutions. Committee topics and crisis scenarios are designed to challenge delegates to think critically and creatively about NATO’s current operations, priorities, and future directions.
In addition to the simulation, students take advantage of our location in the nation’s capital to meet with Canadian policymakers and foreign and military policy officials, and diplomats and military officers representing NATO member countries. MNATO organizes visits to embassies, high commissions, and Canadian federal departments for students to receive briefings on their country’s specific position on Alliance policies and priorities. MNATO also hosts a range of distinguished speakers and important networking opportunities. The event affords a unique opportunity for young Canadians to gain a greater appreciation and more nuanced understanding of NATO and its important contributions to international peace and security, while at the same time developing professional skills, such as negotiation and policy research.
In 2021, MNATO held its first virtual conference where students had a unique experience in digital diplomacy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.