Category Archives: What’s On at DKWien?

Rigorous Selection: The Trials for Zagreb EUDC 2014

In the first weekend of April, DKWien held trials for this year’s European Championship (EUDC) 2014 in Zagreb. Many DKWien debaters wanted to go. Hence, it was necessary to hold an internal tournament to find the best teams as well as the best adjudicators to represent DK Vienna in Zagreb at the EUDC in August 2014. 13 DK members were trying to get a slot in debating, and 6 of them also competed for an adjudication slot. DKWien can send max 3 teams and 2 adjudicators (at the time the article is written: 2 teams, 1 adjudicator), so a professional trial procedure was crucial. To make this possible, DK invited Anat Shapira and Charlie Morris as selectors. Both of them have a lot of debating experience and coach debating societies.

On Thursday before the “trials-weekend”, Charlie held a workshop for us. After the workshop, it took us some time to decide where to go for our social, but then the “Welt Café” in the centre of Vienna got our attention, because we thought food and drinks for a reasonable price are the perfect starting point for getting to know our judges Anat and Charlie. There, we had a lot of discussions about debating, debaters, Chennai Worlds, travelling etc.

Relaxed vibes at the Friday evening social at Tel Aviv beach

Relaxed vibes at the Friday evening social at Tel Aviv beach

After a workshop by Anat, the trials started on Friday afternoon with two individual rounds. In these rounds, everyone prepared on their own. As debaters  are used to preparing with their team partners, this was a novel experience. As expected, these two rounds turned out to be a slightly messy, because no one knew the views of their partner about the particular motion, and so there was a lack of teamwork. Charlie and Anat were using these rounds to see how the participants of the trials can do on their own, what their strengths and weaknesses are. They used this knowledge on the next day to team up debaters, which they thought would fit well.

For the Friday social we managed (after a few phone calls) to find a typical Austrian restaurant where you can enjoy Austrian-style asparagus, as Charlie was looking forward to. This social was easy-going, since we still had a lot of debates ahead of us on the next day. So eating and discussing more or less debating related topics was the evening’s program.

On Saturday we had a full day of debating with four rounds, starting at 9 a.m. in the morning. During these four rounds Charlie and Anat were forming teams to figure out the best matches. Every round they assembled new teams, which allowed them to see a lot of different combinations. It was possible to get a partner you never had debated with before and it was really an experience to debate with so many different partners in such a short time. It was not always easy to use the preparation time carefully with an unknown partner.

It felt a little bit odd that we didn’t get a call or feedback after every round, but we were able to save time: The purpose was not to find a winner for the weekend but rather to find perfect contingent for EUDC.

Saturday’s social was Sabine’s birthday party at the same time. Sabine booked a nice place to celebrate, with lots of people, debaters and non-debaters. The evening was surrounded by a lot of drinks and music. By their nature debaters feel the need to compete all the time. As a consequence the evening was scene for intense matches of tabletop football.

The adjudication trials were held on Sunday. The participants had to watch a debate on a video screen and judge it, and after that they had to give a call and justify their decision.

Well deserved Pizza for everyone after the results were announced on Friday.

Well deserved Pizza for everyone after the results were announced on Friday.

After the adjudication trials, Charlie and Anat announced who they would sent to Zagreb this summer. Melanie Sindelar and Stefan Zweiker will lead the contingent as Vienna A, Madlen Stottmeyer and Mark Etzel form Vienna B and Andreas Villarreal and Christoph Jäger go as Vienna C, accompanied by Miri Muntean and Anne-Claire Sanna as adjudicators.

After the announcement, Charlie and Anat were giving us feedback for the whole weekend and told us about our strengths and weaknesses.

Charlie and Anat were amazing CAs and were really doing their best to find an amazing delegation. DKWien is really thankful that they helped us make a decision and we were really pleased to host them.

It was an exhausting but amazing weekend. Every participant got to know their strengths and weaknesses better, and learned what skills they should improve on. Furthermore it was a good possibility to find out who matches with whom really well, not just for EUDC, but generally for all tournaments.

DKWien is really proud to have found such a good delegation and wishes them all the best for Zagreb.

Katja Schager & Ingo Bandhauer / dpr

Berlin IV 2014: Of Speedy Drivers, Debates, and a Whole Lot of Fun

Group picture in Prague before departing for Berlin.

Group picture in Prague before departing for Berlin.

5 ecstatic debaters, one car, and plenty of speedy drivers. That was all we needed to start our journey to the land of Sauerkraut. 

 

 

We departed on a lovely Thursday evening with a one night break in Prague. The city was quiet, but our stomachs were grumbling, and so we scoured for food at the ungodly hour of 11pm. Since there were no local restaurants open at this time, we settled for an English restaurant where we indulged in… fish burgers!  British food, because, after all, we are British Parliamentary debaters. All we needed to complete this British tradition was – yes, you’ve guessed it, black tea.

Prague was a beautiful city, but we sadly had to leave the next morning for Berlin. The road trip this time was very interesting, albeit stressful for Stefan and Madlen as new drivers took their turn on the road. There was even a scream once in the car. Oops. Nevertheless, the contingent of speedaholics arrived safely in Berlin.
The Contingent of Speedaholics (Anne-Claire Sanna, Regina Puthenpurayil, Stefan Zweiker, Yasmin Fareed, Madlen Stottmeyer) Speedy drivers on their way to Berlin IV 2014.

The Contingent of Speedaholics (Anne-Claire Sanna, Regina Puthenpurayil, Stefan Zweiker, Yasmin Fareed, Madlen Stottmeyer v.l.n.r) Speedy drivers on their way to Berlin IV 2014.

We were welcomed in Berlin with white WUDC leftover goody bags and a hostel booked specially for us. We felt really pampered. Round one began and the debaters spirits were high – 3 points for DKWein Red (Madlen & Stefan) in a great debate and 2 points for DKWein White (Anne-Claire & Regina) in another good debate. After round 1, there was a public debate on the EU, where Madlen decided to stand up and do her bit in contributing to the lively discussion.
We returned to our hostel and decided to have our own little social with plenty of open-hearted conversations. The contingent of speedaholics turned in really late (3.30am), loosing track of time.
The next day the two DKWein teams had a face off in what they called an amazing debate with high-class debaters – obviously, for such a high-class contingent. 😉 DKWein Red was at 6 points after the debate, while DKWein White remained at 2, but was still at a great position for the quality of the debate. The next few rounds of the day were very interesting, with motions ranging from THBT history curricula should feature the same proportion of male and female historical figures to THW make voting mandatory. Interesting issues that we didn’t expect to be discussing in Berlin.
The hosts of Berlin IV provided everyone with plenty of beer at the end of the day, to make sure everyone could appreciate the quality of German beer. We all got a little lost on the way to the social, but finally found it in the end. The break announcement was made at about 10pm, where we found out that DKWein Red broke 7th with a staggering 11 points! Congratulations to Stefan and Madlen for making us proud. We had a great time at the tournament and DKWein White also went home with an impressive 6 points! The adjudicator (Yasmin) also became one of the only wings who was given the opportunity to chair the last round (Madam Chair), making it her first time ever chairing a debate.
 
The tournament was Europe-themed in collaboration with the upcoming EU Election

The tournament was Europe-themed in collaboration with the upcoming EU Election

In the semi-finals, DKWein Red debated from Opening Opposition whether the prison system should be abolished. They did really well, and we are were all very pleased with Stefan and Madlen’s speeches. After a gruelling 2 hours of waiting, making it the longest deliberation our contingent has ever experienced, we found out that DKWein Red was not fortunate enough to enter the finals. In the end, the tournament was won by Lund Debate Society, who debated in Opening Opposition and won in a three-to-two split decision on the motion THBT the EU should force member states to adopt socially progressive legislation. After the debates on Sunday, we took a relaxing stroll around Berlin and went on a well-deserved shopping-trip.
Greetings from the Autobahn!

Greetings from the Autobahn!

We left Berlin at 8.30pm and drove through the night, where we had a ‘mini-crash’ in Brno in the car. The trip back was very tiring for Stefan, as he was the only experienced driver who drove the entire 690km on his own. We arrived at 7.30 am in Vienna and were exhausted, but rather content with our lovely experience in Berlin. Kudos to Stefan, who managed to drive through the whole night, and even drove well. Nevertheless, we had a lovely time in Berlin, and would definitely do this again!


We thank the conveners and the CAs for a remarkable tournament. Till next year!

 

 
Yasmin Fareed /msi

 

Motions for Berlin IV 2014:
Round 1: TH Supports the “No Platform” Practice towards Far-Right and Fascist Public Figures in Advance of the EU Elections.
Round 2: THBT History Curricula Should Feature the Same Proportion of Male and Female Historical Figures.

Round 3: THW Allow Assisted Suicide for Terminally Ill Children with the Consent of Their Parents.
Round 4: THBT Western States should Substantially Support the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in its Efforts in the Developing World to promote Birth Control that is Undetectable by Men.
Round 5: THW make voting mandatory.

Semi-finals: THW abolish the prison system.

Finals: THBT the EU should force member states to adopt socially progressive legislation (e. g. same-sex marriage, abortion rights, ethnic and religious minority rights).

Taking Things Seriously: DKWien at Arandjelovac Open 2014

A brave group of young debaters from our beloved DKWien took advantage of (mostly) great weather for a wonderful trip to Serbia  to compete in the „most serious tournament in Europe“, Arandjelovac Open.

Success was moderate, but our motivation was unbreakable. For the sake of the story, let’s start at the beginning.

Vienna Delegation at Arandjelovac Open - and the Vienna EUDC flag!

Vienna Delegation at Arandjelovac Open – and the Vienna EUDC flag!

Inspired by our own Stefan Zweiker, who stepped up to fill the role of one of the Deputy Chief Adjudicators  of the tournament, the debating teams of Lisa Duschek & Yasmin Fareed and Christoph Pirringer & Ingo Bandhauer made their way to Arandjelovac.  Our dear Regina Puthenpurayil, who attended the tournament as a judge, was of course a big part of making the experience unforgettable as well.

But since that would be way too straight forward for some, Yasmin, Lisa and Christoph decided to take DK-Wien cruiser, fresh out of top-secret government labs (also known as a Volvo 740). The road-trip led them along the beautiful Balaton (where the local tourism-industry was still hibernating) and then onwards to Belgrade.

The most amazing food, wonderfully nice locals and a great guided walking tour of the city started us off on a great weekend. The following day, Friday, we met up with Regina and Stefan for a quick lunch before we left for Arandjelovac.

After hilariously criss-crossing the city (Arandjelovac is actually quite large) we found our Hotel, the „Runja Zora“, which would be our home for the next 2 days. Luckily for those of us who did not have the responsibility of judging (and for some reason therefore had to go into „seclusion“ separate from the debaters) we had the greatest apartment of the hotel, including a Jacuzzi. Unfortunately however, whenever we had time to use it, we had no hot water.

Well, such are the trials of young debaters, and we had better things to do anyways, since our stay at the Runja Zora started off with a great and lighthearted social event to meet and greet all the debaters.

That the tournament actually WANTED to be the most serious tournament in europe was shown in the „fun-debate“ between the chief adjudicators, debating on “This house regrets the break-up of Yugoslavia”. To balance out 20th century politics, the „graffiti party“ left all of us with artistically-enhanced t-shirts. After a fun evening of celebrating, chatting and drinking Rakia (the devil’s beverage) we went to bed (some more drunk than others). On Saturday morning, the pre-rounds finally started in a nearby school and while Lisa and Yasmin were sent straight to the „bin“ after the first debate, Christoph and Ingo actually made 1st place. After recognizing that the bin „tastes like garbage“ Lisa and Yasmin agreed to leave it as quickly as possible. Fate was finally in their favour and they managed to make 2nd place. Unfortunately, the two guys got 4th in this round. With similarly varying success both teams pushed through all 4 rounds that Saturday with motions ranging from „THB that countries neutral in WW2 (e.g. Switzerland) should pay financial reparations to countries occupied by Nazi-Germany“ to „THB that disabled persons should be paid services of sex-workers with public health-care money.“ The last round on Saturday being a closed round, the day was concluded without knowing how many team-points each team had gotten. Tired from the day, both teams decided to „skip“ the official socials and have a pyjama-room-party instead. It was a nice evening with loads of unhealthy snacks and local (non-alcoholic!) fruit juices.

First Opposition (Oxford) took the win in a thrilling final "THS a right to bear arms"

First Opposition (Cambridge) took the win in a thrilling final “THS a right to bear arms”

We faced Sunday and with it the last pre-round well rested. The motion was „THBT feminists in the Western World should not campaign against polygamy in Islamic countries“. While in some of the previous rounds prep-time was used by Lisa to explain European History to Yasmin, Yasmin’s time had now come, for this motion was exactly the one she had hoped for. Thanks to her vivid speech about women’s empowerment in Islamic countries the two made 2nd place again.

Unfortunately the road-trip threesome had to leave just after the break-announcement, because 800 kilometres were still ahead of them. So they said goodbye to Arandjelovac, the Rujna Zora, the stray dogs and their beloved supermarket and left for Vienna.

In the end it turned out that both teams had gotten 6 team-points, so at least no one would kill anyone else out of envy. With a trunk full of incredibly cheap Serbian hygiene products and a newly-developed taste for long road trips we returned home where we decided to get a good night of sleep and digest the impressions and experiences of Arandjelovac Open.

Lisa Duschek

 

Motions of Arandjelovac Open 2014, March 21st-23rd 2014
R1: In countries where prostitution is legal, THBT national health systems should cover services of sex workers for the disabled.
R2: THBT feminists should not campaign against polygamy in the Islamic world.
R3: THBT countries like Switzerland, that were neutral in WW II should pay financial reparations to states occupied by the Nazis.
R4: THW criminalise the public denial of evolution.
R5: THBT the Western World should not portray ‘’The Great Explorers’’ (e.g. Christoph Columbus, Vasco da Gama) as heroes.
Semi: THBT the US should covertly manipulate election results in South and Central America, in order to prevent the emergence of left wing governments.
Final: THB in right to bear arms
/aap

Vienna IV 2014 – Motions and tab

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The Winners from Team Belgrado, Marija Simić and Djordje Jovicevic, together with the CA-Team Stefan Zweiker, Christine Simpson and Nicole Loiter.

 

With the OrgCom and all others involved having more or less recovered, it is now time to officially thank everyone for this year’s edition of the Vienna InterVarsity Debating Tournament!

Convened by the Dynamic Duo of Melanie Sindelar and Regina Puthenpurayil and with an outstanding CA Team – Christine Simpson, Nicole Loiter and our very own Stefan Zweiker – the tournament saw us celebrate the tenth anniversary of Austrian Debating, with nearly 100 teams from all over the world joining us for the tournament and party. Vienna IV 2014 was the biggest Intervarsity ever held in Europe.

After six rounds, challenging quarter- and semifinals and a Grand Final in the Festive Hall of the University of Vienna as well as some fun socials along the way, it was Marija Simic and Djordje Jovicevic from the team “Belgrado” (Closing Government) who took home the coveted trophy.

Following teams debated in the Finals of the Vienna IV 2014:

  • OG: Warsaw A (Karolina Partyga, Maja Łukomska)
  • OO: Vermont GW (Rebecca White, Mariel Golden)
  • CG: Belgrado (Marija Simić, Djordje Jovicevic)
  • CO: Vermont SS. (Jacob Senghas, Franny Solnick)

Congratulations to all and once again thank you for this amazing weekend! Many thanks from Debattierklub Wien to our sponsors, importantly our key partner Baker & McKenzie, the Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien, the Universität Wien, Ströck, Esarom, Red Bull, Jede Dose zählt, Wien Tourismus, and especially JEF – the young European federalists.

Goodbye from Vienna – we hope to see you in 2015!

Motions:

Final: THBT No state in any situation has the right to demand, encourage or promote its citizens to fight or die for the country

Semi final: THBT that media aimed at children should stop depicting the ‘happily ever after’ (For the purpose of the debate the ‘happily ever after means the end of a movie where the main characters end up happy in a romantic relationship)

QF: Given a machine to predict a person’s life 95% accurately, thw not use it

R1: THBT NGOS should reject sponsorship from companies whose actions are not consistent (= who do not act in accordance with) with the charities aims

R2: In situations where it is not possible to achieve both aims and the decision is upon the doctor, THBT doctors should prioritise prolonging life over the quality of that life

R3: Context slide: The current population growth in the Vienna neighbourhood of Ottakring is almost exclusively driven by immigration from beyond Austria’s borders. It ranks among the areas with the highest percentage of immigrants and is particularly popular with immigrants from Eastern Europe, the large majority of which come from the former Yugoslavia.

THBT that Vienna should devote Ottakring to immigrants from Eastern Europe (i.e.: An Eastern European ‘China Town’)

R4: THBT the US and the EU should support a Russian annexation of Crimea in exchange for an otherwise independent Ukraine.

R5: Infoslide: The Thirst Games is a reality tv show in which contestants compete against each other and battle to the death. The games continue until only one contestant remains alive, and that person wins fame, glory and riches.

Assuming participants have consented freely and in full knowledge of the risks and possible consequences, THW allow its citizens to participate in the “Thirst Games”

R6: Infoslide: For the purpose of this debate “good time tourism” refers to every form of tourism that satisfies human desires and is commonly forbidden in Western states (sex, drugs, chewing gum).

THS nations that market themselves as destinations for good time tourism.

 

The Tab can be accessed here.

 

 

Andreas Villareal

10 Years of Debating in Austria – Birthday Party

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Buckle up your Lederhosen, and get ready for some Schnaps! We are going to party properly Austrian style this Saturday. We Austrians love the mountains, are crazy fun-seekers and since ten years we also debate. Time to celebrate and have a good time.

Location: The Vienna IV Break Night and Birthday Party will take place at “Bergstation Tirol”, close to Karlsplatz. It’s a unique mixture between a Ski-hut and a club. Once at the Künstlerhaus, you will take the stairs down to the Bergstation – but once you’re inside, you will feel like in a hut on top of the Tyrolean mountains!

Dinner: You will be served delicious Tyrolean specialities, there will be one free drink included and a discounted drink special just for you!

Dresscode: If you do have a “Dirndl”, traditional Austrian dress or Lederhosen, you should absolutely wear them. Otherwise the dress code is anything that is red (and smart)!

Start: Dinner will start at 7pm and our volunteers will escort you to Karlsplatz from WU.

Vienna IV 2014 Surrounding Programme

 

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Warning: If you were planning on coming to Vienna to be bored, do not read this article. 

The 2014 Surrounding Programme

As a Vienna IV tradition we prefer to extend the joy of debating beyond the actual tournament. Also we think, seven days of activities should easily fit into a three day tournament. Hence, the 2014 surrounding programme features 7 days of socials, an extra debate and some great opportunities for you to see Vienna. If you’re in Vienna for Vienna IV you are very much invited to join in to the events, find more information about them in the respective Facebook Event.

All In One Place For Smart People

Add the Vienna IV Calendar as an ICAL or XML to your calendars and have all events, locations and the full tournament schedule on your smartphone. There is also an html version.

The Schedule

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DKWien. The K stands for Crazy.