Thursday, February 26, 2009

Law Debate Format

Presentation of New Debate Format on IDEA Exchange 2008 held in Amsterdam, Dcember 4 - December 6

Monday, February 23, 2009

DebateFest 2009 Draws to a Close

Three weeks of straight debate in Seoul, South Korea finished up last weekend. High school and university students from across Asia met to exchange ideas, build friendships, and, of course, debate!

After the Korean High School Debating Championship from February 2nd-February 6th, Chung Ang University opened its campus again for the second-annual CAU-IDEA Pacific Rim Championship from February 8th-11th. 18 two-person teams competed in British Parliamentary debate. A special congratulations to Hallym University of International Studies for fielding teams of brand-new debaters, and to our international participants: the hybrid team “Landlocked” representing Mongolia and Afghanistan, and to Wang Tong and Zhu Xin Wei from Xi’an International Studies University in China!

The Championship kicked off with a two-day training on British Parliamentary Debate. Special thanks to trainers Ronna Liggett (United States), Sayeqa Islam (New Zealand) and Rhydian Morgan (United Kingdom) for lending their expertise. After a sample debate on the merits of banning gambling, we held lectures and activities on the format and rules, asking points of information and developing extensions. New judges attended a separate session on the basis of adjudication.

Tuesday opened the tournament, with four preliminary rounds on the topics “THW abolish mandatory military service,” “THBT all expectant parents should take genetic tests of their babies,” “THW not jail bloggers for expressing their opinions” and “THW fire the board of directors for all corporations which receive government bailouts.” Wednesday held two more preliminary rounds on the topics “THW decriminalize adultery” and “THBT the assassination of dictators is a justifiable option,” before announcing the break for elimination rounds.

After excellent and well-informed semifinal debates on the motion, “THBT universities should be allowed to accept students based on donations and not just test scores” teams from Korea University, Sungkyunkwan University, Chung Ang University and Yonsei University advanced to the finals round. On the motion, “THW tie international aid to democratic reforms” the Opening Government made a case for the link between economic growth and democratic reforms. The Closing Government continued their side’s case by stating that aid in its present form only assists dictators, and tied aid would be a peaceful push to democracy. While the Closing Opposition argued that substantial damage would be caused by cutting off aid to aid to undemocratic regimes, it was the Closing Opposition’s questioning of the merits of imposed democracy that took the debate home.

The results were as follows:

Xi’an International Studies University (Wang Tong and Zhu Xin)
EDiS (Dohhee Roh and Jihyun Kim)
HUFS 1 (You Mi Kang and Tae Hoon Jung)
DAE 4: (Jeongmin Jeh and Heeje Sung)

Korea 1 (Minkyung Cho and Hyewon Rho)
CUDS 1 (Nam Chul Kim and Sun Young Kim)
SKEDA (Ha Jung Kim and Kang Min Lee)

UIC 1 (Wonjun Jung and Minjae Yoo)

After an IDEA-sponsored banquet to celebrate the CAU-IDEA Tournament and one day of rest, the Winter Asian Debate Institute began on February 13th. The Asian Debate Institute is a week-long debate camp for university and high school debaters across Asia. Normally a summer event, this was the first year that a winter version was held. 40 debaters from Korea, Japan, China and Indonesia joined together at EWHA Women’s University. Established debate trainers from around the world taught courses on Asian Parliamentary Debate. Major thanks to Logan Balavijendran of Chung Ang University for organizing an intense (and intensely fun!) week of great debate, and congratulations to “The Three Kims” (Nam Chul Kim, Sun Young Kim, and Hong Shik Kim) for winning the final round of the Institute tournament.

DebateFest 2009 has drawn to a close, but the spirit of debate is strong and growing in Asia. Keep debating and we'll see you soon!

New Oreans Debate Workshop/Tournament Registration Open!

New Orleans area students and teachers are invited to a refresher workshop on March 6th, followed by a day-long tournament on March 7th! Find out more, and register for the workshop and tournament today!

Friday, February 20, 2009

How to Prepare a Debate Tournament?

Presentation on IDEA Exchange 2008 held in Amsterdam, Dcember 4 - December 6

Korea DebateFest in full swing!

February has been a jam-packed month for debate in Korea. The first week kicked off the Korean National High School Debate Championship and Workshop. IDEA sends a big congratulations to Daewon Foreign Language High School for taking home the top title!

The Chung Ang University- IDEA Pacific Rim Championship and Workshop followed two days later. Trainers from the United States, the United Kingdom, New Zealand and Malaysia lent their expertise to university debaters from across Korea and China. Won Joon Jang and Min Jae Yoo from the Underwood International College at Yonsei University took first after a final debate on the merits of tying international aid to democratic reforms.

The month concludes with the Asian Debate Institute, a week-long intensive program for both new and veteran debaters across Asia. Our lab groups are just now wrapping up, and students are busy preparing for the the final end-of-the-institute tournament... stay tuned for the results!

Elizabeth Humphrey, IDEA Program Coordinator, Korea

On April 8, top university teams go head-to-head in New York

The Open Society Institute Youth Initiative’s Debate Program is supporting a series of international debates in the United States this spring. The series will culminate in a round-robin invitational sponsored in part by the Open Society Institute and organized by the International Debate Education Association and Hobart and William Smith Colleges.

Debaters from eight universities and six countries will put on a public exhibition debate in World University Style, the world's most popular format of debate.

Lunch will be provided, but please note that seating may be limited.

Debate Topic: "This house believes that developing nations should prioritize adapting to climate change over preventing it."

Location: OSI-New York
Date: April 8, 2009
Time: 12:00 - 2:00 pm
Contact Martin Greenwald for more information:

High school students around the world: prepare for the Spring Global Debates!

Are you ready to join a truly global discussion by organizing a Global Debate in your school, and have a chance at winning a trip to the Youth Leadership Summit in New York City?

Here’s how to compete:
1. Form a team
2. Register your team
3. Hold a public debate between March 1st and March 31st on this topic:
“Developed countries have a higher obligation to combat climate change.”
4. Complete and document a service project
5. Add point activities such as video PSAs, blogs, letters to the editor, etc.
Find out more at!
The People Speak Spring Global Debates is an initiative of the United Nations Foundation, in partnership with IDEA.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Subscribe to The Big IDEA

Receive IDEA news every week, right in your email inbox! To subscribe, simply send an email to

In this week's issue:

Note from the editor
The results of our Big IDEA survey are in: Out of the 52 people who made a few decisive, survey-completing mouse clicks, exactly 30 wish to see The Big IDEA every week. So they win!
I have another survey for you, one that will help shape the future of What do you like about the site? How would you improve it? What features would you like to see? In just a few clicks, if you haven’t already, take the second survey!
Crystal (Phillips) Jeffers, Communication Director, IDEA Willamette University

IDEA opens CafePress store
Support a good cause, and order an awesome IDEA logo item from IDEA's new CafePress store! We're offering T-shirts of every fit, color and style (including ringers and raglans), as well as mugs, mouse pads, and more. Shop IDEA!

President Abe Lincoln and the Spring Global Debates
Thursday was Lincoln’s birthday, Monday is President’s Day, and on March 1, The People Speak Global Debates begin. It’s never been a better time to ask the question: given this spring’s Global Debate topic, “Developed nations have a higher obligation to combat climate change,” what case for the proposition would the late President Lincoln devise? Honor a great US president by researching his moral and political beliefs, and speculate what he would have done.
What is your obligation to combat climate change? To answer this question, register and compete in The People Speak Spring Global Debates! High school students in more than 80 countries participate. Overall winners of the 2008-2009 Fall and Spring Global Debates receive a trip to the Youth Leadership Summit in NYC, July 2009!
Find out more!

Registration opens for the 2009 Turkey YouthCamp
YouthCamps connect youth who have goals and ideas for a more open society, with youth wishing to contribute to these goals, in collaborative, inspirational projects. These collaborations empower youth to become active citizens willing and able to influence public life, and they promote open society ideals. Join the April 2009 YouthCamp in Istanbul, Turkey, to guide this new effort by sharing your ideas and experiences.
Visit the site to learn more.

IDEA Youth Forum registration is about to begin!
The Forum is accepting up to 200 participants, or 50 Karl Popper Debate Championship teams. Every institution that participated in past Forums has 1 place granted automatically. After that it’s first come, first served!
Participation in the IDEA Youth Forum is conditional. All participants will be reviewed and invited to attend the IDEA Youth Forum by the Participants’ Selection Committee. The only exceptions are individuals coming for the Karl Popper Debate Championship (KPDC), and observers.
The Forum will take place in the Olympic Center, Jahorina, Bosnia and Herzegovina from July 23 to August 5. The cost for the whole Youth Forum is 600 EUR per person. Some participation fee waivers are available. Registration opens soon and will close on April 30, 2009. Applicants wishing to apply for a fee waiver have to submit their application by March 31, 2009.
For more information please go to the Youth Forum website or download the invitation letter!
Veronika Vlckova, Forum Coordinator, IDEA Netherlands

Forum topic library coming soon!
We will start an article library for the 2009 Youth Forum KP and MT topics! Each week, I’ll post an article pertaining to each of the topic sets. Each article will include an accompanying synopsis that gives you a brief look into what the article deals with and what it says. Also look for contributions from this year’s YF trainers on articles that are essential reading on the forum topics. Simply access the Youth Forum website.
Bill, Forum Curriculum Director

Debatepedia launches debate article on US stimulus package
Debatepedia recently completed a comprehensive debate article on the $800 billion US economic stimulus package. Even after the passage of the stimulus legislation through the Senate on February 10th, 2009, the debate over the package continues, particularly with so many important philosophical questions at stake. Can the government have a significant impact in stimulating the economy? What does history tell us, particularly with examples such as the impact of the New Deal on the Great Depression? Is spending a better way to stimulate the economy than tax cuts? Is deficit-spending to fight off recession necessary and tolerable? What are the consequences of adding to the national debt?
View the arguments underlying these questions on Debatepedia.
Brooks Lindsay, Debatepedia

Join IDEA on Facebook
Please join 1,300 IDEA members on Facebook, and get up-to-date IDEA news as it happens. Join the Youth Forum and Debatepedia there too!

IDEA member countries: submit content for Idebate Magazine by February 20th
The next issue of Idebate Magazine is set to mail at the end of March. Do you have an exciting, brief debate report to share from your member country? Email it to by Friday, February 20.

HWS / IDEA Round Robin field announced
The following teams will compete at the 2009 Round Robin in April:
Babes Bolyai
Hart House (Ferris/Jorgenson)
Hart House (Freeman/Lizius)
Loyola Marymount (Kiley/Schwab)
Loyola Marymount (Aguilera/Molison)
National Law School of India
Tel Aviv
Judge selections will be made soon. Anyone interested in adjudicating should contact Eric Barnes at: barnes (at) hws (dot) edu.
Just a few selected accomplishments of these teams includes: - 3 Quarterfinalist teams at the World Championships - Semi-finalists at the World Championships - 2 Finalist teams at the Canadian National Championships - Finalists at the US National Championships - Finalists at the North American Championships - Finalists at the Southern African Championships - Finalists at the Oxford IV - The second breaking ESL team at Worlds - The ESL World Champions - Finalists at the World Championship - The Canadian National Champions - The US National Champions - The All-Asian Tournament Champions
Eric Barnes, Hobart & William Smith Colleges

NPDA teams welcome at US Universities Nationals
NPDA teams and adjudicators are welcome to join us and debate in the WUDC format, at the US Universities Debate Championships. While foreign teams can win the tournament, the highest-ranking US team will be named national champion. The championship is hosted by the University of Vermont and sponsored by the International Debate Education Association.
All of our information is online.
We are expecting 100 teams and are at over 50 now. We already have a strong entry, with many overseas teams, and I was contacted by Middle Temple and a team from India today.
Our chief adjudicator, Neill Harvey-Smith, president of World Debating Council, will announce his DCAs at any moment, and promises a well-run and adjudicated event.
Please joins us! Contact me at
Alfred C. Snider aka Tuna, University of Vermont

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Istanbul Youth Camp

We have now opened the registration for 2009 spring Youth Camps, starting with the Istanbul Youth Camp, to be held April 4th and 5th.

Please register at:

For more information please visit:

We look forward to seeing you in Istanbul!

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Help improve!

The time has come to redesign, and we need your help. The site exists for you, so what would you like to see more of on How would you improve it? Complete the survey today!