Friday, August 26, 2011

WSDC 2011: Key Results

The 2011 World Schools Debating Championships ended yesterday in Dundee with no top awards going to the old power - countries that won past WSDCs, which interestingly are all predominantly Anglo-Saxon. Indeed, Singapore, an Asian city-state that was once a British outpost, had reached the grandfinals and taken the best speaker award home before. But the 2011 success in double scooping the top team and individual prizes is still an important milestone for Asian debating.

While WSDC postings on this blog come from various sources, a special appreciation should go to Paul Lau, whose blog is a superb fountain of information on high school debating. 

Here are the key results from the world's most prestigious high school debating tournament. The numbers in the brackets after a team follow this order:  post-tournament rank, rank after 8 preliminaries, pre-tournament seed and level. WSDC uses a 3-on-3 format but each team can have up to 5 members and rotate their turns. Only speakers who debated at least 4 times in the preliminaries can enter the top individual lists.

Champions: Singapore (#1/#15/#5/A) -- first champion from Asia
(Teoh Ren Jie, Ashish Kumar, Benjamin Mak, Adil Hakeem, Liki Ng)
Finalists: Australia (#2/#4/#2/A)
(Bo Seo,  Tyrone Connell, Emma Johnstone, Ned Lis-Clarke, Beatrice Paull)

Best New Nation: Barbados (#41/#41/#46/F)
Best ESL Team: South Korea (#12/#6/#11/B)
Best EFL Team: Netherlands (#10/#3/#14/C)

Best Speaker: Teoh Ren Jie (Singapore) 74.7
Best ESL Speaker: Chun Ye Eun (South Korea) 72.9
Best EFL Speaker: Kim Chan Keun (South Korea) 73

((ESL stands for English-as-Second-Language, supposedly a level higher than EFL, which means English-as-Foreign-Language. The distinction between the two is pre-set but may change from year to year. It is also individually based, enabling one team to have multiple levels of speakers. Length of time in an English-speaking country and use of English in a debater's school are key components in setting the distinction. All members of an EFL team must be EFL speakers. All members of an ESL team must be ESL or EFL speakers. An EFL team/speaker cannot vie for the ESL award eventhough their scores are higher than any ESL team/speaker. In WSDC 2011, EFL winners scored higher than ESL counterparts))

Indonesia (#37/#37/#27/E)
W-L: 2 wins, 6 losses; Judges: 8; Score: 5832.5
Best Speaker: Nudzran Yusya (SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh) 69 -- #20EFL

WSDC 2011: Trophy Goes to Singapore, First Champ from Asia

#15 Singapore became the first Asian winner of the World Schools Debating Championships after beating #4 Australia on a 7-2 decision in the finals of the 2011 edition in Dundee, Scotland. Debaters from the tiny, modern city-state, where one party has ruled alone since its conception, successfully knocked down the motion "This House Believes That Autocracy is Doomed in the Age of Facebook".

The road to glory was no cakewalk. Team Singapore, which reached the finals in 2003 and 2007, barely broke into the knockouts this year. They lost 3 of their 8 preliminary rounds, bowing to New Zealand, Pakistan and the Netherlands, an EFL team. Singapore met New Zealand again in the octofinals where they scraped a close 3-2 win. The revenge was the turning point as they progressed to the throne with more convincing victories.

This year Singapore fielded an experienced team. All 5 members, including WSDC 2011 best speaker Teoh Ren Jie, had debated in past editions. Four debaters came from Raffles Junior College - Ashish Kumar, Benjamin Mak, Adil Hakeem, and captain Teoh, who competed in 2010 and 2009 - while the fifth member was Li Ki Ng from Hwa Chong Institute.

The next WSDC will be held in Cape Town, South Africa from January 17 to 27, 2012 - five months away. The close timing may force countries to have teams filled with returning members. It is unclear whether that will apply for Indonesia after the 2011 team ended their journey in Dundee at #37 with a 2-6 record. Indonesia's one consolation was Nudzran Yusya from SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh slipped into the Top 20 EFL speaker list.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

WSDC 2011: Australia v Singapore in Final Debate

#4 Australia and #15 Singapore, two countries that border Indonesia, will battle it out in the grandfinal of the 2011 Worlds Schools Debating Championships in Dundee tomorrow. Australia will propose the motion "This House Believes That Autocracy is Doomed in the Age of Facebook" as revolutions in the Arab world show how citizens have been using social media in building resistance against their governments.

The finalists are perrenial favourites in WSDC. Australian teams have won 8 times, including in the 2003 final against Singapore. However, this year's tournament has been far from predictable. Australia lost a preliminary round against South Africa while Singapore felt defeat 3 times, including in the hands of an EFL nation - the Netherlands.

Darkhorses clearly stole the attention with strong performances in the prelims but their shine quickly faded like comets after the break. The Netherlands, United Arab Emirates and South Korea, countries where English is not the main language, broke third, fifth and sixth, with impressive scorelines, into the octofinals where they all fizzled. In fact, all teams in the quarterfinals came from current or former parts of the British empire.

Team Indonesia missed the break after losing 6 out of 8 prelims and finishing at #37, a record low. Click the WSDC button on the navigation bar for details and stats of Indonesia's participation on the most prestigious high school debate competition on the planet.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

WSDC 2011: Motions in Knockout Rounds

Knockout rounds of the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships bar the grand final used impromptu motions. Here they are:

OF: This House Would Abandon Nuclear Energy
QF: This House Supports Free Immigration
SF: This House Believes That Any Region Should Have the Right to Secede if the Majority of Population Wish
GF: This House Believes That Autocracy is Doomed in the Age of Facebook

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

UPD Wins Intramuros IV, UI Reaches Quarters

Pearl Simbulan and Alistair Zosa from University of the Philippines-Diliman last weekend won the 3rd Intramuros International IV, a BP tournament in Manila attracting teams from all over Asia. Universitas Indonesia sent Bawor Cup champions Ahdiat Permana and Dimas Hokka there and the pair reached the quarterfinals, a respectable achievement at the regional level. There is no varsity competition in Indonesia during the holy month of Ramadan. The season will resume in September.   

WSDC 2011: Break List

#1 England broke first into the knockouts of the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships. While no team scored a perfect judge-point record of 24, three countries won all of their 8 preliminary rounds, including the Netherlands, an EFL team that was only seeded at #14 before the tournament. Indonesia, which has never lost to the Netherlands in WSDC, ended the prelims at #37, missing the cut that stopped at #16. The complete break list can be found below (Rank, Seed, Country, W-L Record, Judge Point, Team Score).
  1. #1/A England 8-0, 23, 6180.5
  2. #4/A New Zealand 8-0, 23 6107
  3. #14/C Netherlands 8-0, 22, 6055
  4. #2/A Australia 7-1, 21, 6178
  5. #19/D United Arab Emirates, 7-1, 21, 6096
  6. #11/B South Korea, 7-1, 21, 6093
  7. #3/A Canada, 7-1, 19, 6136.5
  8. #12/B Wales, 6-2, 20, 6120.5
  9. #15/C Scotland, 6-2, 18, 6043.5
  10. #9/B Pakistan, 6-2, 17, 6052
  11. #10/B Ireland, 6-2, 16, 6049
  12. #6/A South Africa, 6-2, 16, 6045
  13. #7/B Greece, 6-2, 16, 6038
  14. #16/C Hong Kong, 6-2, 15, 6056.5
  15. #5/A Singapore, 5-3, 17, 6239.5
  16. #23/D Mexico, 5-3, 15, 5960.5   

WSDC 2011: Indonesia Misses Break, Ends at #37

Indonesia was seeded at #27 before the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships in Dundee but ended at #37 out of 48 participating countries after 8 mandatory rounds. Only the top 16 can proceed to the next round.

Team Indonesia this year won 2 debates, collected 8 judge points, and lost 6 matches, half of them unanimously. While Indonesia had a 2-6 record in 3 past tournaments since it first competed in WSDC in 2001, its lowest rank was at #34 in 2008. Indonesia has broken twice in WSDC, in 2003 and 2004, each with a 5-3 record.

The details of the matches in the past week are as follows:

R1 THW Offer Dictators Immunity in Return of Leaving Power
Opp vs Australia (#2/A) -- 0-3

R2 THW Allow the Distribution of Free Music on the Internet
Prop vs Namibia (#44/H) -- 1-2

R3 THBT Universal Primary Education is a Misallocation of Resources for the Developing World
Prop vs Nigeria (#41/G) -- 2-1

R4 THW Make Voting in National Elections Mandatory
Opp vs Pakistan (#9/B) -- 0-3

R5 THW Legalize the Sale of Human Organs
Prop vs Sweden (#32/F) -- 3-0

R6 THW Stop Sending Humans into Space
Opp vs Israel (#13/C) -- 1-2

R7 THBT Women Can Only Achieve Equality under a Secular System of Government
Opp vs India (#21/D) -- 0-3

R8 THW Penalize Sporting Teams for the Behavious of Their Fans
Prop vs USA (#28/E) -- 1-2

Debaters: Ruth Gracia Nainggolan (SMA 81 Jakarta), Nudzran Yusya (SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh), Margreta Kailla Adenta (SMA 2 Tangerang Selatan) and Wisnu Aryo Setio (SMA 5 Bandung).
Coaches: Eldhianto Jusuf (Universitas Gadjah Mada) and Ahmad Naufal Dai (Universitas Indonesia)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

WSDC 2011: Indonesia Unanimously Defeats Sweden

#27 Indonesia won the votes of all three judges in the fifth round of the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships against #32 Sweden. Team Indonesia successfully defended the motion "This House Would Legalize the Sale of Human Organs", keeping the chance to advance into the knockouts alive. They stand at 2-3 at the moment with 3 more debates to go.

Usually, only teams with at least 5 victories out of 8 rounds have the possibility to reach the top 16. Indonesia has broken twice in WSDC, in 2003 and 2004, each with a 5-3 record. Last year's team matched that scoreline but did not make the cut on judge points. Ruth Gracia Nainggolan (SMA 81 Jakarta), Nudzran Yusya (SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh), Magreta Kailla Adenta (SMA 2 Tangerang Selatan) and Wisnu Aryo Setio (SMA 5 Bandung) are representing Indonesia this year. While only 3 debaters can be fielded in a match, all members of the squad can contribute in case building.

Only #4 New Zealand have the perfect record of 5 VP and 15 judge points after 5 rounds of debates in Dundee. Darkhorse #13 Netherlands, an EFL team, are among the 5 teams with 5 VP so far. 

Friday, August 19, 2011

WSDC 2011: Indonesia at 1-3 After 4 Preliminary Rounds

At the half way mark of the preliminaries, #27 Indonesia's chance to advance into the knockouts of the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships is slim. Today's Round 4 impromptu debate on mandatory voting against #9 Pakistan ended with an unanimous decision for the opponent, leaving Indonesia at 1-3 and 3 judge points.

Usually, only teams with at least 5 victories out of 8 rounds have the possibility to reach the top 16. This means Team Indonesia must win all of the remaining 4 rounds to keep the hope alive. Indonesia has broken twice in WSDC, in 2003 and 2004, each with a 5-3 record. Last year's team matched that scoreline but did not make the cut on low judge points.

#32 Sweden and #13 Israel are the R5 and R6 opponents on Sunday while Team Indonesia will face #21 India and #28 United States on the final day of prelims. This year's team consist of Ruth Gracia Nainggolan (SMA 81 Jakarta), Nudzran Yusya (SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh), Magreta Kailla Adenta (SMA 2 Tangerang Selatan) and Wisnu Aryo Setio (SMA 5 Bandung).

Three teams so far still have the perfect record of 4 VP and 12 judge points in WSDC 2011 - #4 New Zealand, which won the 2009 tournament, and darkhorses #11 South Korea and #12 Wales.

WSDC 2011: Indonesia Beats Nigeria for First Win

#27 Indonesia collected its first victory point in the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships in Dundee today after defeating #41 Nigeria in Round 3. Proposing that "This House Believes that Universal Primary Education is a Misallocation of Resources in the Developing World", Team Indonesia received nods from 2 out of 3 judges on the panel. #9 Pakistan will be the opponent in the next round that will employ an impromptu motion.

WSDC 2011: Indonesia Still Hunts for a Win

#27 Indonesia had an unfortunate start at the 2011 World Schools Debating Championships in Dundee today. The first debate against #2 Australia saw all 3 judges favouring the 8-time champion and the second one against #44 Namibia ended with a 2-1 split decision for the opposition.

Indonesia opposed the motion "This House Would Offer Dictators Immunity in Return for Leaving Power" in the opener and proposed to allow free distribution of music on the Internet in the impromptu Round 2. This year's team consist of Ruth Gracia Nainggolan (SMA 81 Jakarta), Nudzran Yusya (SMA Modal Bangsa Aceh), Wisnu Aryo Setio (SMA 5 Bandung) and Margreta Kailla Adenta (SMA 2 Tangerang Selatan).

Indonesia is considered as an E class participant. Each team in WSDC is designed to face 8 opponents in the first stage drawn from 8 different classes. Australia is an A team while Namibia comes from the H class. The WSDC preliminaries are pre-determined with 4 rounds using prepared motions while the other 4 are impromptu debates. Only the top 16 can proceed into the knockouts.

Indonesia has only broken twice, in 2003 and 2004, since its first WSDC participation in 2001, each with a 5-3 record. Click the WSDC button on the navigation bar for history.  

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Euro 2011 Results and Motions

The 2011 European Universities Debating Championships ended yesterday in Galway, Ireland with University of Oxford A (Ben Woolgar & Hugh Burns) taking the trophy. They defeated University of Cambridge A, University of Durham B and Trinity College Dublin B in the grand final of the open category. Oxford teams have won 7 out of 13 Euros so far. This year's ESL prize went to University of Tel Aviv from Israel. The motions used in the second most prestigious British Parliamentary debate competition in the world are as follows.

GF: THBT the state should pay reparations to women
GF (ESL): THBT God exists
SF: THBT the West should promise preferential economic and political cooperation to Arab democracies that adopt secular constitutions
SF (ESL): THW require persons who work in the media to wait for years before running for public office or working for the government
QF: THW never fight for King and Country
QF (ESL): THW ban all EU arms companies from selling arms outside the EU

R9: THW legally require priests to report all serious crimes that they hear in confession
R8: THBT US and EU should cease all financial, political and military support to both Israel and the Palestinian authority
R7: THBT early childhood education in schools should undermine traditional gender roles
R6: THBT hacking is an acceptable form of protest against large corporations
R5: THW allow the creation of donor siblings
R4: THBT Barack Obama should have vetoed any debt deal that did not increase taxation
R3: THBT Germany should ban the publication of Hitler's "Mein Kampf" indefinitely
R2: THW prohibit media from using software to cosmetically improve an individual appearance
R1: THW bring back the death penalty

Friday, August 12, 2011

Debate Season to Resume in September with JFF, BIND

It is always calm before a storm. There is no debate competition in Indonesia in Ramadan, which squarely falls in August this year, but the season will resume in force next month with magical motions and world class adjudicators. The two tournaments in September will use the British Parliamentary format, the choice of most comps until the World Universities Debating Championships at the turn of the year.

The Just For Fun debates at Universitas Indonesia will be the opener and organizers plan to use topics based on the Harry Potter novels. Muggles, Hogwarts and the Ministry of Magic will be standard words in this tourney. The September 10-11 competition will have 3 preliminaries before the best 8 can proceed to the semifinals. Registration is still open. Click this for inquiries.

Two days after JFF, the most ambitious debating competition in Indonesia will kick off at Binus International University with WUDC 2012 Chief Adjudicator Lucinda David and her deputy Tim Mooney as part of the adjudication core. Schools from all over Asia first showed huge interest to join the BIND Championships but a few of them have pulled out, allowing committed institutions to send more teams. The registration is still open until August 30. High school students and composite teams can register.    


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

ASDC 2011 List of Motions

The 2011 Asian Schools Debating Championships ended last week in Seoul with Daewon High School from South Korea as the champion after beating Xavier School from the Philippines in the grandfinal. Malaysia's Sekolah Tuanku Abdul Rahman (STAR) will host next year's ASDC. Indonesian teams failed to excel in ASDC 2011 but the motions used in the tournament may help preparations in our schools. 

  • THW disallow people from leaving inheritance to pets
  • THW abolish all animal cruelty laws
  • THW not allow people to keep wild animals as pets
  • THW ban sports that aim to inflict physical violence on competitors
  • THW not allow minors to become professional gamers
  • THW have a minimum quota for local players in domestic leagues
  • THBT the right to offend religion/s is an essential element to freedom of speech
  • THBT the feminist should embrace women who choose to disempower themselves.
  • THBT anorexia is a legitimate lifestyle choice.
  • THW stop the public funding of NASA
  • THBT governments should fund research to clone extinct species
  • THBT humanity would be better off knowing that intelligent life exists somewhere else in the universe
  • THBT South Korea should stop seeking reunification
  • THBT China should abandon its one child policy
  • THBT the ASEAN should suspend Myanmar’s membership pending democratic reforms
  • THW abolish laws that protect royal families from being insulted
  • THBT monarchies have no place in modern democracies
  • THBT the LGBT Movement should stop celebrating gay parades
  • THBT Japan should abandon civil nuclear energy
  • THBT it is justified to break the law to protect the environment
  • THBT governments should include environmental impact in measuring economic success
  • THW televise executions of criminals
  • THW legalize all drugs in the USA
  • THW not grant tourist visas to states with high incidence of human trafficking
  • THBT US government should establish schools that teach immigrant children in their native tongue
  • THW force religious schools to teach sex education including contraception
  • THW stop all research towards the cure for autism
  • THBT the ICC should try Bashar Al Assad.
  • THBT aid should be protected by force without the permission of the sovereign state
  • THW allow objection to military service on the grounds of personal beliefs
  • THBT the Greeks should default
  • THBT all water consumption beyond basic needs should come from private sources
  • TH regrets the rise of microfinance
Novice Finals
  • THBT tabloids are essential to a vibrant democracy
  • THW allocate airtime for racist political parties in public TV networks
  • THBT celebrity felons should have harsher penalties (selected for final)
  • THBT post-conflict societies should destroy all artwork created in support of a fallen dictator
  • THBT mainstream governments should not contact isolated tribes (selected for final)
  • TH celebrates the co-optation of political and artistic counter-cultures into the mainstream