Thailand WUDC 2020 – Interviews

ByEUDC, WUDC and WSDC Reporter

Thailand WUDC 2020 – Interviews

Written by: Mike Weltevrede

With WUDC having concluded, we look back with the participants. How did they experience the tournament? What were their favourite motions? Did they spend more time in Thailand and surroundings and how did they like it?

Author’s note: They were in a sunny country while we were here in the cold. I bet they had a great time. *grunt*

Angela Portocarrero

Angela (formerly UDS) participated in WUDC as language officer and to judge. She chaired 6 inrounds and broke to judge the EFL Semifinals.

ST: How did you experience the first day of the tournament?
AP: Day 1 was full of excitement and general awe as the campus for Assumption is incredibly beautiful. The sheer size is already enough to make one feel impressed but the buildings and facilities and gardens are also astonishing, there’s been a full day of debaters just walking around admiring the campus.

ST: What about the other two days, was it different?
AP: Day 2 felt a lot speedier since we were all now into the pace of debating and rounds and were already familiar with the campus– although my favourite motion was the hypothetical support for Mexican cartel monopoly, I have to say some of my favourite arguments were made in R4 involving the abolishment of the Olympic Games and how out of touch with the needs of people and the reality of the host countries these games have become.

ST: Finally, day 3. How did you enjoy it?
AP: Day 3 was a lot of excitement and nervousness overall. For me, I winged two outstanding rooms with brilliant chairs and chaired one room with an excellent debate – it is always strange being on the other side and having information that you can’t share as a judge! My favourite motion was R7 on the ASEAN principles, although I am definitely conditioned by the fact I watched it unfold in the 2nd room of the tournament with excellent speakers. It’s interesting to see IR motions at such a high level and especially involving less typical actors like the ASEAN countries! In this motion, my favourite arguments were those of economic development and integration for these countries.

Huyen Nguyen

Huyen (formerly EDS) served as language officer at Thailand WUDC and also judged. She chaired 5 inrounds and broke to judge the ESL Semifinals.

Sun-drenched Huyen

ST: How have you experienced WUDC?
HN: Before the tournament even started it promised to be a blast as a huge cockroach flew right over my hair. There was the mandatory stress that comes with being on the language team as well (Debaters-please-fill-in-the-form-on-time…). On day 1, I had jet lag but still had to fill in ballots and give oral adjudications for all three rounds. Luckily I wasn’t publicly shamed by the lovely tab team for any dumb mistakes. By the way, indoctrination at economics graduate studies is a real thing: it’s impressive how it has systematically inculcated my subconsciousness with a plethora of economic jargons. There was also a Panel Discussion of Gender Inclusion Night on December 30 that I greatly enjoyed. Moreover, I also took a compulsory Thai Worlds picture in a sun-drenched afternoon.

Saskia Bergmann

Saskia participated in Thailand WUDC as speaker on behalf of ASDV Bonaparte, together with her team partner Nikola Michaylov. They ended up taking 14 team points home.

ST: Which motion(s) was/were your favourites?
SB: Despite not doing so good in the rounds I (and I think Nikola too) enjoyed the motions on Cartels, it was interesting mainly because of the very multilayered analysis of actors and the contestation of the framing by all teams in the debate. I also really like the motion on the Social Credit System, mainly on the principled discussion. Both of these motions were quite awful to debate and felt (and were later confirmed to be) rather weighted towards one side but I still like the core in discussion.

ST: What was your favourite case that you ran?
SB: I think my favourite case was the ASEAN one because 1) we knew a lot about the motion 2) the only reason we knew anything is that we got into an argument about who knew more about ASEAN on day 1 and then ended up quizzing each other on it. A great way to prep for worlds.

ST: Have you taken some extra time in Thailand or somewhere else? If so, what did you do and what did you like best?
SB: Yes! We both stayed in Bangkok for one day after the event ended and visited a Michelin star restaurant, looked at pretty views and enjoyed our time on the rooftop of an Airbnb.

ST: In general, how did you like Thailand WUDC?
SB: Very happy with WUDC, mainly because of the social life and food. The food was A-mazing. For 3 or 4 nights the dinner was multicultural street food stands – from cheese toast to sushi.

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