Debating Skills

Democracy and Citizenship in Europe


Why student debate?


Regardless of origin, individual traits, or social context, all youth voices matter. 

By helping young people value their voice, the voice of others, and meaningfully speak out, debate strengthens Democracy. By igniting young people to positively address current challenges and shape a better future for all, debate strengthens Citizenship. 


To promote debate as an educational tool that enables the confidence to speak up, empathy, critical thinking, and creative thinking, thus empowering upper-secondary students and strengthening democracy and citizenship.

A project with three phases


1st - Partners

To identify partners in each country that may connect schools and teams at a national/ regional level.


2nd - Training

To support schools' and teachers' debating activities through a common rulebook, training, local events and a helpdesk.


3rd - European event

To promote a debate event in Brussels (2025), with one team of upper-secondary students per country selected by the national/ regional partner.

How to participate?

Project Partners - EFEE Members can become partners of the project, supporting the relation with schools, promoting a debate event, and selecting the national team for the European debate event.

Schools and teachers  - The project partners will act as liaison between the project coordination and school and teachers. Schools and teachers will participate in online or face-to-face training on student debate. The project offers a tested rulebook and concrete resources to begin using debate in upper secondary education.

Students  - Students will participate through their schools.



2023, Jun. to Oct.

Presentation of the project and building of the network of partners

2023, Oct. to 2024, Dec.

Training and support to teachers and schools (online or face-to-face)

Local events

2025, Jan. to Feb.

Presentation of students’ teams by the national members

2025, Apr.

European student debate event in Brussels

European Debate Event

The third phase of this project is a European student debate event. One team from each country will participate. This will be an opportunity for students to engage with others using an age appropriate rulebook.

This event will take place in Brussels (April 2025), and support will be given for travel and lodging.

In April 2023, a similar European Student Debate Event occurred in Lisbon. Like in the present project, this international event followed one year of teacher training and local events. This short video testifies how debating allows learning together, building positive relationships, and skills for life, democracy, and citizenship.  


Coordination team

Debating Skills

Rodrigo Queiroz e Melo

Project Manager

Vice-president of CEPCEP – Research Center from the Portuguese Catholique University and of EFEE, Rodrigo brought together the different institutions to build the present project with a higher focus on inclusion. With experience in international project management, Rodrigo will drive “Debating skills” until 2025.   

Debating Skills

Nuno Archer

Pedagogy & Training

Nuno Archer de Carvalho is an educator and researcher with experience in personal and social development projects, including debate projects and teacher training. Nuno works at Colégio Pedro Arrupe and has coordinated the previous European student debate project. He will support the educational potential of “Debating Skills”.

Nederlands Debat Instituut

Training Partner

For over 20 years, this non-profit foundation has been teaching children and youth to speak with more conviction, listen carefully to one another, and keep curious about the opinion of peers. We organize debate tournaments, provide training in schools and help teachers apply debating in their classes. 

Promotion and support

CEPCEP - Research Centre on Peoples and Cultures
European Federation of Education Employers
Training partner
In collaboration with
Debating Skills

The worst thing is to rush into action before the consequences have been properly debated. Pericles

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