CSTD: Commission on Science and Technology for Development

Welcome to the CSTD Committee at SCMUN 2019!

Background Guide will be available on February 1.

The Commission on Science and Technology for development (CSTD) is a subsidiary body of ECOSOC that is responsible for providing ECOSOC with advice on relevant science and technology issues.

Currently, the CSTD has been focusing on clean energy and green industrial development in order to promote sustainable development (as laid out by the 2030 agenda).

The specific missions of the commission are to examine prominent questions regarding science and technology, to implement science and technology into future policy-making (specifically in developing countries), and to develop recommendations to the UN on science and technology matters.

Topic A: Sustainable Development of Nuclear Resources

With global temperatures rising at unprecedented rates, there is now more of a need than ever to accelerate development in the field of clean energy. Nuclear energy is crucial to this, as it relies on the usage of natural resources. And, despite not being ‘renewable’ energy, the very high mass to energy conversion of the uranium used means that there exists an abundance of naturally-occurring sources for this process. However, despite the huge potential of nuclear power, it remains a less pursued form of clean energy around the world, especially in developing nations. Critics of nuclear power claim that it is unstable, poses security risks for surrounding inhabitants, and that it can be abused to create nuclear weapons. These concerns, along with the high financial and technical costs required in nuclear energy production, have impeded its progress in developing nations, with public sentiment hindering advancement in several developed nations as well.

Topic B: Blockchain Technology for Social Change

Blockchain technology is a technology where databases are distributed among multiple different computer systems that record information shared on a peer-to-peer network, using cryptography and other techniques to create secure and immutable record of transactions. Such transactions can range from currency (e.g. money, stocks) to proof of ownership of tangible assets (e.g. goods, property) and intangible assets (e.g. votes, ideas). Blockchain technology has the potential to secure users’ data and prevent private information from leaking to outside sources. However, since there is no central body overseeing the activities that occur, there are relatively frequent cases of money laundering and black market exchanges. Although it is theoretically secure, cryptocurrencies are also susceptible to hacking, and this may come with devastating financial losses for companies and investors.