DLE starts at SOAS IV

This weekend it starts. Seven countries, seven capitals, seven tournaments, one League: The Debating League of Europe. (Well, technically it’s six capitals plus Utrecht, but let’s consider the Netherlands one giant urban area for a moment.) With the DLE, the European debating circuit gets what the circuit has almost become already anyway: A cohesive debating scene where debaters from all over Europe regularly meet and mingle. The league provides a common framework for keeping track of results of chosen tournaments across Europe.

The DLE is open for participation for every debating society in Europe. Every debater can be part of that European sense of belonging. But besides the benefits for the European idea and the fact that all participants gain a lot, we also have old-fashioned incentives. At the end of the season, there are two winners: A society that wins the league and a speaker who wins the DLE speaker tab – in open break and in ESL.

Both – best societies and best speakers – will be honored during the opening ceremony of the European Universities Debating Championships. The honorary guest will award them with the prize they’ve earned. That stage and the greater European debating scene are potentially open to every society. The only thing to do is: Take part in the tournaments. And if you like it competitive: Be good in them!

The tournaments to be visited in the first year are spread across Europe. The first step is taken by the SOAS IV in London , followed by: Utrecht Open, Trinity IV in Dublin, Vienna IV from Austria, Paris IV, the Belgrade Open and the Berlin IV. The Plan of the League can be accessed here. In the second season, the DLE will probably consist of even more tournaments. For more details, please take a look at the tentative tournament schedule. We hope, that this league makes funding for societies easier in terms of visiting these tournaments. Moreover we hope that the League brings high quality debating into the last corner of Europe.

We know that at the first glance it seems hard for every debating society to visit every tournament. This is why the tournaments are located in capitals: usually those are easy to access for everyone and worth a visit anyway. Further, it is important to emphasize that the teams that gather points for a society can consist of different people at each tournament. Thus the travel expenses can be distributed between many. Thirdly, there is no need participate in every tournament to win the league – 66% are enough. And last of all: With a little luck and some help, the EU might find this project worth funding. We are exploring that possibility right now. If somebody has hints or advice regarding that: Please do contact Marcus Ewald!

There are other advantages

All the rankings and reports about the tournaments and the current standings will be published here.

Along with the numbers and tabs you will be able to find background information and links to all important resources of the European debating scene.
European debating long has longed for a cohesive scene. This league makes that possible. By creating a number of tournaments that matter. Please support this idea, since it has the potential to create a truly European sense of belonging.

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4 thoughts on “DLE starts at SOAS IV

  1. Just one comment: Utrecht is NOT the capital of the Netherlands. But since our country is small any way, I guess it is one big capital..

  2. Unfortunately, I really dislike the entire idea.

    It just seems like an artificial league driven by only one motive: propagating 7 very specific tournaments. Making “wannabe elitist” groups, groupings and alliances is the last thing that European debate needs. DLE, no thank you.

  3. Hi m,

    with one thing you’re right: The DLE has something to do with propagating. It is our explicit goal to give students a reason to go to tournaments in all over Europe – and by that, to create a even more European debating scene. Once you start accruing points that motivation rises. A debating league has worked pretty well in that resprect everywhere it was introduced.

    However, when it comes to choosing the tournament, there’s a problem: These tournaments have to be specific. Specific in that they have to be big enough and that they have to be close to an international hub. Otherwise no society could afford to take part in a meaningful amount of tournaments. Oh, and, at least in the first season, the amount of tournaments has to be limited. That’s how we chose the tournaments. This has nothing to with elitist behaviour. As any other tournament around the world, these tournaments are serving the scene and the participants.

    This league is, as any league, articficial. But the motives behind it are the exact opposite of elitist. Please give it some time and try to see the benefit that it might also have.

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