Thursday, January 2, 2014

Thessaloniki Wins WUDC 2016 Bid, Debating Comes Home to Greece

Debating is coming home.  Greece, the land where the method of dialectics was first introduced more than 2,400 years ago, will host the 2016 World Universities Debating Championship after a bid to hold the competition in the country's party capital of Thessaloniki decisively triumphed over a proposal from South Africa. The Greeks got 76 votes in the WUDC Council yesterday while their rival only collected 37.

After a string of organizational shortcomings in WUDC Chennai, the council put in place measures to prevent a repeat. There will be an audit on the preparations 3 to 6 months prior to the event and the committee must have a professionally accredited financial officer who can explain budgetary issues to the council. An aspect from WUDC 2014 that stays is the team allocation that considers the past breaking achievements of teams.

WUDC Thessaloniki promises to create a escrow account for adjudicator subsidies that will be controlled by the council and paid before debates begin. They have also uploaded their £500,000 plus budget that includes £50,000 for judge subsidies. The organizers, the Debate Society of Greece, also promise to hold training before and in between rounds for developing teams that will be led by WUDC 2013 champion Nita Rao.

The debates will mostly take place at the University of Macedonia, which is located only 3 km away on the same street from the main accommodation. The chief adjudicator is Manos Moschopoulos, a Greek debater formerly from Deree College who won the best EFL speaker award in WUDC 2010. His current deputies are WUDC 2013 best speaker Chris Bisset (Monash, Sydney) and WUDC 2007 ESL champion Tasneem Elias (IIU), who both have adjudicated in Indonesian tournaments before. Three more DCAs will be hired this year. Universitas Indonesia debater Boby Andika Ruitang will be a member of the language committee that will decide whether a debater is eligible for the ESL or EFL categories.

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