Student - January 6, 2016

New experience on WC debating

Carina Nieuwenweg

Teun Fiers and Jos Buijvoets of Wageningen Debating did quite well during the debating world championships, from 28 December to 3 January in Thessaloniki, Greece.

Photo: Jos Buijvoets (left) and Teun Fiers, the team of Wageningen Debating

In nine rounds of debating they earned ten points. The duo was able to earn the points by regularly becoming second or third during the debates. The duo that according to the jury came first place in a round of debating received three points, the next team two and the third place one point. The team that came last received no points.

To get through to the final rounds fifteen points were needed. ‘We felt that we had a chance. Which made it extra fun to still fanatically participate during the last day’, Teun says.

In the preparations the duo anticipated a statement on feminism. This proved to be a good bet, because when a similar proposition was made, they had the necessary social theories ready to give good arguments.

‘But of course there were also topics that we did not expect’, says Teun. For example, the team from Wageningen Debating had to defend a statement that the constitution should be provided with an expiration date. ‘To us that seemed like an unrealistic idea. Thus to defend it we had to be really creative. Which problem would it solve? Finally we came second in this round.’

Next year the world championships will be in the Netherlands. Jos Buijvoets will take part of the organization for this tournament. Teun is still debating whether he wants to participate or volunteer to help. 'But I will at least ensure that there will be a proper Wageningen delegation present. You learn a lot from each other during such a tournament. In terms of content, but also in debating techniques.’