Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Ljubljana Faculty of Administration to Provide Conference Facilities

President-elect of Slovenia Danilo Turk addresses debaters in one of the halls to be used for the conference.

Bojana Skrt has secured an agreement with the University of Ljubljana Faculty of Administration to use their lovely new facilities for the conference.

Univerza v Ljubljani, Fakulteta za upravo/University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Administration Address: Gosarjeva ulica 5, Ljubljana
web adress:

The facilities were used by the International Debate Academy and they are truly beautiful. There are ample large classrooms for presentations as well as two large auditoriums for keynotes and opening meetings. There is a large space for registration and a reception. There are a number of coffee bars, drinks bars and a number of restaurants to visit for lunch. Negotiation has begun with one restaurant to provide lunch for all conference participants on Saturday.

We are truly greatful to the Faculty of Administration for their support and partnership in this event.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Make Hotel Reservations Early

Because Slovenia will be occupying the presidency of the European Union for the next six months hotel rooms in Ljubljana are already 60% full for the weekend of the conference.

Please make reservations early. We will have lots of space in the low cost high school dorm we have arranged, but or more upscale housing you need to act now.

Details are at

Friday, October 19, 2007

Dr. Omar Salahuddin bin Abdullah to be Debate Keynote

<== Omar with university debaters in Korea

Omar is a faculty member at Multi-Media University in Malaysia and is recognized as the father of Asian debating. Omar first debated in University [Leeds, UK] in the early 70s [He says, "Badly! Too much manner and almost zero substance"]. Got involved as a coach/trainer of Debaters in the National University, Malaysia [UKM] in the early 90s. Teams that he has coached have won the Malaysian Nationals [Royals] twice (UKM and UiTM], the All-Asians five times [UKM, MMU and UiTM] and broken consistently at Australs.

Omar Salahuddin has also continued to debate: competitively, as a member of 'Team CWD' on the "adult circuit" in Malaysia, as a member of Team Malaysia [3-time winners of the All-Asian Masters competition, as a member of 'Team Chaos' representing MMU in the Australs in 2003 [Lost in 1/4 finals to eventual Champions from Sydney] and in various exhibition and Model debates.

Omar claims that his 'important skills' are: An ability to navigate by sextant - day or night, having what it takes to make a mean Mexican chillie, competent woodworking skills, the 'kiss of the Blarney' and the common sense to know when not to argue [with life-partners].

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Kate Shuster to Keynote at 2008 Conference

Catherine "Kate" Shuster of California has been announced as the keynote speaker in the pedagogy division of the April 2008 Ljubljana conference, Thinking and Speaking a Better World.

Kate has been a worldwide leader in understanding and applying active methods in the classroom at various levels. One of her areas of emphasis has been oral literacy and how it can be successfully taught. Kate has eight recent books to her credit and a number of important works in submission. She is perhaps best known for her efforts to promote debating in middle schools. Her work in southern California to promote debating in this age group has been matchless. The Middle School Public Debate Program is the largest and fastest growing classroom and contest debate outreach program for students in fifth through eighth grade. Since its inception in 2002, more than 10,000 students from Southern California communities have participated in the program, says Kate, who teamed with Claremont McKenna College's John Meany to create the program from scratch. Her work can be seen at . Her classroom debate blog can be found at

Kate was the USA National Debate Tournament champion in 1996 and has been a driving force in the evaluation and critical reexamination of debate practice ever since. Her pedagogical focus is demonstrated by her comments about the middle school program's expansion into the Los Angeles school district. “This really is an opportunity to foster leadership and critical thinking skills, and encourage civic engagement among adolescents in the county’s most disadvantaged communities,” Shuster says.

Kate also has an outstanding reputation as a speaker and lecturer, and is known as one of the most engaging speakers anywhere.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Paper and Presentation Guidelines Updated

Paper proposals (a less than one-page abstract) should be submitted as soon as possible but not later than 15 February 2008. The committees will evaluate proposals in hand each month and inform those submitting papers of the committee's decision. Full copies of papers should be provided electronically by the beginning of the conference. ALL PAPERS AND PRESENTATIONS MUST BE IN ENGLISH.

Papers should be between 2500 and 5000 words. Conference presentations should be 20 minutes with 10 minutes for questions. Feel free to also propose panel discussions, debates and other events. Format for papers will be that of the Modern Language Association. For information, see . You can download a copy of the guidelines at .

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Hotel List Now Available


Bojana Skrt writes:

All the hotels recommended are in the center of Ljubljana. The reservations and payments can be made online through their web pages. The prices go from 30 EUR per person in Hotel Tabor to a 150 EUR and more in Grand Hotel Union, breakfast included.


For the ones who would like enjoy the "Hippest Hostel in the World" we strongly recommend HOSTEL CELICA: , where the room and breakfast can be found for 25 EUR.

Hostel Celica has been transformed from a former prison into an artistically designed youth hostel. Celica (meaning cell in English) offers accommodation in 20 artistically renovated former cells with bars on the door and on the window. Each cell is unique and has been artistically designed by its own author or a group of artists.

You can find more information about accommodation and Ljubljana at the:


IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ENJOY THE HOSTEL IVANA CANKARJA OPTION, PLEASE SEND THE RESERVATION TO BOJANA SKRT The payments should be made directly to the hostel when checking in.
This dorm is also located in the center of Ljubljana, room and breakfast in two bed rooms is 18 EUR per person/night , in single 23 EUR (there are a very limited number of singles available).

Frans van Eemeren To Be Keynote Speaker

Frans van Eemeren, perhaps the most noted argumentation scholar in the world, has agreed to be the keynote speaker in argumentation at the 2008 conference. Professor van Eemeren will also serve on the argumentation evaluation committee along with David Williams of Florida Atlantic University will also be on that committee.

Here is a description of Frans van Eemeren's background from

Frans van Eemeren is Professor in the Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric in the University of Amsterdam and director of the research programme 'Argumentation in discourse' of the Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis. His research interests include argumentation theory and rhetorical and dialectical analysis of argumentative discourse.

Prof. Frans van Eemeren is internationally recognised researcher in the field of argumentation theory and rhetoric, as is visible by his numerous credits (keynotes, awards, guest professorships, translations into Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish, etc.); Supervised 24 doctoral students who all graduated; Editor and member of editorial boards of a large number of international scientific journals (editor of Argumentation, the most important journal in the field) and book series (such as Kluwer Academic’s Argumentation Library); Chairman of theInternational Society for the Study of Argumentation (ISSA); Administrator and experienced programme manager who also has experience in leading and attending international educational programmes (among others DASA and University College Utrecht). Acting director of the Institute for Cultural Analysis and director of the research programme Argumentation in Discourse (ASCA). Currently he is also a Guest Professor at New York University.

His publications include Studies in Pragma-Dialectics (with Rob Grootendorst, eds., 1994); Fundamentals of Argumentation Theory. Handbook of Historical Backgrounds and Contemporary Developments (with Rob Grootendorst, A. Francisca Snoeck Henkemans and others, 1996); Logic and Argumentation (with Johan van Benthem, Rob Grootendorst and Frank Veltman, eds., 1996).

Find complete information about the conference at

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Malaysian Debate Trainer Excited About Conference

<== Hafiedz (left) with Jake Meany of Vermont at the Asian Debate Institute in Korea

Iqbal Hafiedz of Malaysia has been an outstanding debater (top speaker at Asians) as well as an excellent debate trainer. He is excited about the conference.

He writes:

I actually was just been appointed to be the head of our newly created debate unit in my university (Universiti Teknologi MARA Malaysia). Trying to settle in my new job and a first job as well is quite stressful. I saw your posting regarding the international conference you'll be holding in April and this looks like an excellent opportunity for me to start my career as an educator and the time is ripe for me to start my research into some debate related study.

I am extremely exited about this but I am inexperienced and would probably need some support and guidance. Omar has promised to help me with the paper I am planning to write.

I will be submitting my abstract by the deadline, but since this is my first time, I would like to attend the conference even if my paper doesn't make the cut.