Society Magazine writes about the FDA: "Flow Motion"

The FDA Family would like to thank Alice de Brancion from Society Magazine for her amazing article about this year’s Final.

Thank you for your contribution to the FDA spirit. From the entrance of the Hotel de Lassay to our favorite little post-final Pub, you captured what the FDA is and will forever be: a great opportunity for all of us to learn how to express ourselves in public, share our ideas and contribute to society.

Click here to read the full article!



2016 Tournament Schedule

Dear debaters,

We are happy to announce the schedule for the 2016 FDA Tournament!

Very soon we will provide you with specific events for each debate, containing all the necessary information for you to attend and support your favourite teams.

Book the dates, and enjoy this year's edition of the Tournament!


Pool Schedule:

28 January – Paris Ouest Nanterre – Paris Sud @ Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense

28 January – Mines – ILERI @ MINES ParisTech - Cycle Ingénieur

28 January – Paris II – UPMC @ Université Panthéon-Assas

1st February – ILERI – Telecom @ ILERI PARIS

3rd February – Sciences po – Dauphine @ Sciences Po

6th February – Supaero – INSEEC @ ISAE-SUPAERO

8th February – ENSAE – Sciences po @ École nationale de la statistique et de l'administration économique

11th February – Centrale – Polytechnique @ CentraleSupélec

11th February – Dauphine – ENS @ Université Paris-Dauphine

12th February – Telecom – Supaero @ Télécom ParisTech

13th February – Paris Sud – ENA @ Université Paris-Sud

17th February – Descartes – ENSAE @ Université Paris Descartes

17th February – INSEEC – Mines @ Groupe INSEEC

18th February – Paris I – Centrale @ Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

19th February – Polytechnique – Ponts @ Polytechnique

20th February – ENA – Paris II @ École nationale d'administration

24th February – ENS – Descartes @ École normale supérieure

24th February – UPMC – Paris Ouest Nanterre @ Université Pierre-et-Marie-Curie

25th February – Ponts – Paris 1 @ École nationale des ponts et chaussées



Polytechnique Veterans celebrate their 150th anniversary with an FDA debate

Back in 1865, when the IIIrd Empire was in its prime, Polytechnicians of all the country decided it was time to unite… (Any resemblance to any other event living or dead is purely coincidental…). Thus was born the AX – a cute nickname for the Anciens de l’X Association. Their objective was to influence the future of their alma mater and to support their comrades in any way necessary.

And here we were, 150 years later, on October 10th 2015, not really in the same place, but in a glorious one nonetheless : the Amphi Arago.. there again to change the history of the school!

Or were we…? Nope. Just messing with ya, it was just another glorious debate from a long lineage of glorious debates organized and chaired by the no less glorious Declan McCavana…

There we were, answering his call, 10 former debaters from Polytechnique FDA teams spanning across 2 decades! From 1996 to 2015! Bahareh, Nathalie, Manali, Sylvain, Christophe, Marc, Laurent, Pierre, Thomas and Omar… we were all there to debate whether Polytechnique should reserve 50% of its seats to women!

To prove or disprove such an ambitious declaration, all blades were drawn ( “Tangentes” only of course…): while the Prime Minister – the Iron Lady Bahareh, started the hostilities with the argument that the Ecole Polytechnique must reflect the society it lives in, the Opposition leader – Manali – raised the concern of the fairness of the entrance examination.

The debate followed with strong arguments on both sides: while the government argued that more women will bring more diversity to the Ecole and hence more value to its research, the Opposition countered with the fact that the efficiency of Affirmative Action is debatable!

And while the Government argued that this would end up drawing more women to scientific fields of studies, the opposition suggested that affirmative action should occur way earlier in the academic curriculum!

More pragmatic arguments made their way to the floor as well… from Sylvain’s claim that young Polytechnicians do need a feminine presence… to Thomas’ argument that Polytechnique is a military school and that girls would just slow the training down…

Eventually, as always Ladies and Gentlemen, the floor has the last word! And it decided…

AGAINST THE MOTION!!! By a very large majority indeed….

And then…?

Well… and then we went for some beers at the infamous BoBar. Duh.

Omar Layachi



FDA President appointed Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire

On the occasion of the Celebration of her birthday, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II appointed Mr Declan McCavana Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empirefor services to the promotion of the English language in France” as President of the French Debating Association.

That’s right: on her birthday, the Queen gives presents to us.

This honour celebrates over twenty years of hard work and dedication to debating and to teaching.

Ladies and Gentlemen, raise your glasses and join us in congratulating Declan for this incredible honour… and take the time to congratulate yourselves in the process, for it is thanks to your continued participation and support that this association, and its President, has been able to promote the English language.

Thank you Declan for introducing debating to France!



Université Paris Ouest Nanterre joins the FDA!

Dear debaters,

We are proud to announce that a 20th school is joining our association !

The Université Paris Ouest Nanterre is starting a debating course this year. It will be open to students from all the faculties provided they have a C1 proficiency level in English.

Valérie Chanlot will be organizing the class and coaching the team this year.

Welcome Nanterre !


The FDA goes green


The FDA goes green

On the 26th of September, the FDA organized a citizens' debate in the Parc Montsouris with Météo France and the Agence Parisienne du Climat. 

In preparation for the COP21, the debate centered on environnemental issues: "This House refuses to sacrifice its comfort to save the climate". For the very first time, the debate was held in French and members of the public were invited to express their views about the subject. 

Omar Layachi (Polytechnique), Pierre Brunstein (Paris II), and Elie Ziade (Paris I) carried the motion against fierce debaters from the Fédération francophone de débat. 


The FDA at Campus Fratelli


The FDA at Campus Fratelli

Wednesday August 26th, five former debaters were invited by Campus Frateli to present the art of debating "FDA style".

After a small 2-2 debate on "This House would never have children", the debaters had then a group of 20 students each.

They taught them the art of rhetoric.

Preparation, Argumentation and laughs were heard from all classrooms.

Thank You Campus Frateli!



Members of the FDA participate in the International New York Times Athens Democracy forum


"To be successful you need friends, and to be very successful you need enemies" - Sydney Sheldon

FDA ex-ennemies became teammates and teammates competed against one another at the International New York Times Athens Democracy forum. Debaters from the 2014 and 2015 edition of the French Debating Association tournament have been selected to participate in the international student debate competition at the forum.

Teams from 7 regions of the world competed against each other on sensitive subjects such as austerity, unemployment and justice.

Ghita Lorabi (Université Panthéon Assas, FDA Champion 2015) and Assem Chamah (Supaéro, FDA Champion 2014) were teamed up to represent the Middle East and North Africa. Charlotte Matthews (Université Panthéon Assas, FDA Champion 2015) and Christophe Zhang (Ecole Polytechnique, FDA Finalist 2015) both represented France.

A fierce debate between the 7 competing regions led to a victory of the Asian team. The Middle Eastern-North African team grabbed the runner-up prize.