Asia has one of the most diverse and developed debate communities in the world. However like most other debate communities, not everyone has equal access to teaching materials, trainers, tournaments and other debate related activities. While debate has spread throughout all parts of Asia, many in the region have still not had the opportunity to participate in debate. Opportunities for debate vary widely between say, Kuala Lumpur and Hanoi, which themselves are different from rural areas of many places in the region. While the number of tournaments in Asia has increased and the locations have become more spread out, debate still mainly takes place on the competitive circuit. While competitive tournaments are valuable, galvanizing and fun, mainstreaming debate in classrooms, informal educational fora and community organizations is an important goal as well.
IDEA, in cooperation with experienced Asian debaters and trainers, is aiming to contribute to these aims by connecting people from regions with high debate density to those in emerging debate communities. We believe that debate is a tool to develop effective communication as well as analytical, critical thinking and advocacy skills among youth, all of which are essential for their transition to adulthood and active engagement. Everyone has a right to access the benefits of debate and we invite you to help us achieve that goal.