The institution that the European Universities Debating Championship now is, started in 1999. In 2019, Athens seeks to be the proud host of the 21st edition of the biggest and most prestigious tournament in the continent.
From its humble beginnings, which included 32 teams, the tournament has now grown to include more than 220 teams. These teams, originating from Universities from all across Europe, will come together for 7 days in August, 2019 to debate against one another and eventually see the European Champions declared from amongst them. The format followed is that of British Parliamentary debate. The format was inspired by the workings of the British parliament, where people came together to speak the truth to one another and address the problems of their day as equals to one another.
Arguably, this was but another iteration of an idea that started millennia ago. From the tribe’s communal decisions around the fire, the torch was lost for centuries until it resurfaced in the rich Ionian cities of Asia Minor, only to be planted in the fertile Athenian soil to then blossom as the Athenian Democracy. There, at the Agora, the paragons of state would mix with the citizens and discuss the issues of the day, talk politics and economics, ethics and philosophy, the divine and the mundane.
Now, as our generation springs forth to face some of the biggest challenges and deepest questions humanity has ever faced, it is time to take a step back and get back to the fundamentals. It is time to reaffirm the basic values that debate and democracy are based on.
See you at the Agora.
See you at Athens EUDC 2019.