Carleton Model NATO 2021 Committees

North Atlantic Council (NAC)

The North Atlantic Council is the principal political decision-making body within NATO. It brings together high-level representatives of each member country to discuss policy or operational questions requiring collective decisions. It provides a forum for wide-ranging consultation between members on all issues affecting their peace and security. All members have an equal right to express their views and share in the consensus on which decisions are based. Decisions are agreed upon on the basis of unanimity and common accord. There is no voting or decision by majority. This means that policies decided upon by the NAC are supported by and are the expression of the collective will of all the sovereign states that are members of the Alliance and are accepted by all of them. The NAC is not the only body within NATO that carries such a high degree of authority. The Nuclear Planning Group (NPG) has comparable authority for matters within its specific area of competence. However, in practice, the NAC convenes far more frequently than the NPG and covers a broader scope of themes – as broad as the member countries decide it should be. Consequently, it is commonly referred to as NATO’s principal decision-making body.

Click here to download the NAC Background Guide

Committee Topics:

  • Influence of Hostile Non-State Actors on Domestic & International Affairs
  • Expanding Frontiers and Adjusting NATO Priorities
  • Defence Expenditure Challenges and NATO Capacity

Military Committee (MC)

The Military Committee is the senior military authority in NATO and its oldest permanent body after the North Atlantic Council, both having been formed months after the Alliance came into being. It is the primary source of military advice to NATO’s civilian decision-making bodies – the North Atlantic Council and the Nuclear Planning Group. Its advice is sought prior to any authorization for military action and, consequently represents an essential link between the political decision-making process and the military structure of NATO.

Click here to download the MC Background Guide

Committee Topics:

  • Equipment Lifecycle Management and Interoperability
  • Outer Space Defence Planning
  • Environmental Concerns in Military Planning and Exercises

Partnerships and Cooperative Security Committee (PCSC)

PCSC is the politico-military committee responsible for all NATO’s outreach programs on a wide range of political and security-related issues with non-member states. Specifically, there are six European Union (EU) member states which have declared their non-alignment with military alliances, and are not NATO members. These are Austria, Cyprus, Finland, Ireland, Malta and Sweden. Additionally, NATO also has partnerships with many non-EU member states, including Switzerland, Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Serbia, Armenia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Belarus. The PCSC develops relations on the basis of common values, reciprocity, mutual benefit and respect.

Click Here to Download the PCSC Background Guide

Committee Topics:

  • Extraction of Natural Resources in Contested Maritime Zones
  • Migrations Resulting From Environmental Challenges
  • Gender, Race, and European Stability