Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific ESCAP

GROUP: Regional Bodies

  • Topic A: Sustainable Urbanization in Climate Crises
  • Topic B: Addressing the Gender-Food Gap in Agricultural Systems

TOPIC A Sustainable Urbanization in Climate Crises

TOPIC B Addressing the Gender-Food Gap in Agricultural Systems



  • Lulu DeLuca (she/her)
  • Mia Sullivan (she/her)
Email Committee Chair

The Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) is one of the five regional commissions of the United Nations. ESCAP is particularly concerned with the promotion of economic and social development in Asia and the Pacific through regional cooperation and infrastructure projects. The commission was created in 1947 as a forum for regional collaboration in working towards post-war reconstruction and economic development. While its initial mandate was more narrow, the commission has since expanded to addressing areas such as social development, sustainability policy, energy policy, and disaster-risk reduction in addition to things such as trade, investment, economic policy, and infrastructure for the almost 4.1 billion people who are citizens of ESCAP’s member states. This session will give delegates the opportunity to consider how states in Asia and the Pacific can work together on economic, social, and environmental policy to ensure the continued wellbeing of their citizens.

Topic A: Sustainable Urbanization in Climate Crises
In Asia and the Pacific there has been rapid urbanization in the past three decades. While this rapid urbanization is a reflection of economic growth in the Asia-Pacific, it is also the cause of many of the problems faced by the region, including lack of access to adequate and affordable housing, unsustainable consumption and production models, lack of disaster-preparedness, and increasing economic inequalities. As the frequency and severity of climate crises increase, without support from governments and international institutions, the existing problems faced by people in urban centers in the Asia-Pacific will be exacerbated and new ones will inevitably emerge. In addressing this topic, we will ask delegates to consider how countries in the Asia-Pacific can support urban development that improves economic output while also taking care to ensure that residents of urban centers maintain a high-quality of life, with a particular focus on the effects of climate change on
urban centers.

Topic B: Addressing the Gender-Food Gap in Agricultural Systems
Gender inequalities and gender-based discrimination are major contributors to food and nutrition insecurity in the Asia-Pacific. Women make up a substantial proportion of the agricultural labour-force in Asian countries, yet despite women’s active participation in agriculture, they are significantly more likely to experience food insecurity than men. This gender-food gap has been widened substantially by the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, since gender-norms in many regions mean that there is often an unequal distribution of unpaid reproductive and care-based labour in agricultural communities, women are often not adequately compensated for their labour, and have fewer opportunities to access non-agricultural wage-work which offers better remuneration. In addressing this topic we hope that delegates will come up with solutions that not only address food insecurity in the Asia-Pacific and its disproportionate effects on women, we also hope that they will address
gender disparity in asset-ownership and resource access, women’s control over income, and gendered differences in access to social protection measures like wage subsidies, interest and collateral-free credit, and food and cash transfer programs. Delegates are encouraged to address this topic creatively and holistically, focusing on economic and environmental solutions in addition to social and cultural ones.