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Introduction …………………………………………………….. 2 Why Singapore? ………………………………………………. 3 Why 2015? ………………………………………………………. 3 Provisional timetable ………………………………………. 4 Accommodation ………………………………………………. 5 Key members of the bid committee …………………. 6 Advisers to the bid committee …………………………. 10 Financial matters ……………………………………………… 11 Debating and education in Singapore ………………. 13 Singapore’s involvement in WSDC …………………… 14 Memories of the last WSDC in Singapore …………. 16 General information about Singapore ………………. 17 Endorsements ………………………………………………….. 21 Fun facts ………………………………………………………….. 26

Photo courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Greetings to the members of the World Schools Debating Championships community! This document outlines the details of Singapore’s bid to host the championship in 2015. Singapore first participated in WSDC in 1995 and has sent a team to the competition every year since then – so 2015 will mark the 20th anniversary of Singapore’s entry into the championships. Even more significantly, 2015 will also be the 50th anniversary of Singapore’s independence. It will be a year of celebrations in our small island nation, and hence a great year for us to welcome the WSDC community to our country. We have hosted the championship once before, back in 2002, so we have the experience of having organised the event. Our bid committee includes a few individuals who were key members of the organising committee back in 2002 along with a number of new people, and we would love the opportunity to deliver a great event for the WSDC community in 2015. We have a large and very enthusiastic pool of schools in Singapore who are involved in our local debating circuit who will relish the opportunity to host WSDC debates. Warm welcomes and large audiences for debates can be guaranteed at all the host schools. Singapore is also a cultural melting pot with many exciting things for visitors to see and do. We hope to be able to share all of this with the WSDC community in our nation’s golden jubilee year. Details of our bid can also be found at our Facebook page – If you have any questions about our bid, please feel free to e-mail the bid committee at Several members of our bid committee will also be at the 2013 championship in Antalya and will be happy to talk to anyone who is there and answer any questions. So if there’s anything you’d like to know, please ask. Thanks for reading our bid document. We hope to be welcoming you in Singapore in 2015.

The Singapore Bid Committee

Photo courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Why Singapore?
 A convenient travel destination Located right at the centre of Southeast Asia and boasting one of the world’s best airports, Singapore will be a convenient destination for visiting delegations to travel to with direct flights from most of the world’s major airports.  An easy place to get around As a small city state with excellent transport facilities, the venues for virtually all debates and social events will be within half an hour’s travelling distance of each other.  Strong debating traditions Singapore has a very well established school debating circuit with over 100 schools taking part in WSDC-format interschool debating competitions every year. Singapore can offer: A large number of schools with excellent facilities and enthusiastic students and staff who will be delighted to host rounds of the championships. Singapore’s schools are well known for being efficiently organised and extremely welcoming to visitors. A wide network of experienced local debate judges who are very familiar with the WSDC debate format to complement the international judging pool and help ensure good quality judging panels for every debate.


 A city well prepared for big events Singapore is used to hosting major events. For example, the country hosted the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in 2010. With modern, well equipped schools and excellent infrastructure and conferencing facilities, Singapore has everything needed to host a world-class educational event.  A cultural experience As a diverse and multi-cultural island nation, we can assure participants an outstanding cultural as well as educational experience.  A great place to visit Numerous places of interest and places to shop will be within easy reach of the championship hotel.  A strong organising team Singapore has hosted WSDC once before – back in 2002. Our bid committee includes some people who were key members of the 2002 organising committee who know exactly what it takes to run this event, along with other individuals who will bring new ideas, energy and enthusiasm. The bid committee includes a mix of people who work for the Ministry of Education, other areas of the civil service and the private sector who have the experience and the connections and, most importantly, a passionate desire to put together a great WSDC event.

Why 2015?
 A significant year for Singapore 2015 is the 50th anniversary of Singapore’s independence. We look forward to sharing this occasion with the international debating community.  A significant year for our debating community 2015 is also the 20th anniversary of Singapore’s first participation in WSDC – a significant milestone for the Singapore debating community which we would love mark by hosting the event.  An organising team in place Our bid committee is made up of people who are committed to putting in the time necessary over the next 2½ years to organise an outstanding championship.


Provisional schedule

Day 1 – Monday, 20th July 2015
 Arrivals  Registration

Day 7 – Sunday, 26th July 2015
 Debate rounds 7 & 8  Break night party

Day 2 – Tuesday, 21st July 2015
 Opening day activities for teams  Training workshop for adjudicators  Opening ceremony

Day 8 – Monday, 27th July 2015
 Octo-finals  Tournament Committee meeting part 1  Optional tours/activities for teams in the afternoon

Day 3 – Wednesday, 22nd July 2015
 Debate rounds 1 & 2

Day 9 – Tuesday, 28th July 2015
 Quarter-finals  Semi-finals

Day 4 – Thursday, 23rd July 2015
 Debate rounds 3 & 4

Day 10 – Wednesday, 29th July 2015
 Tournament Committee meeting part 2  Grand Final  Closing dinner

Day 5 – Friday, 24th July 2015
 Debate rounds 5 & 6

Day 11 – Thursday, 30th July 2015
 Departures

Day 6 – Saturday, 25th July 2015
 Bye-round (if necessary)  Tours and activities

Note: Social events will be added to the schedule on a number of the evenings


The participants will be accommodated at 2 hotels close Singapore’s city centre – the Copthorne Kings Hotel and the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel – both of which are located across the street from each other on opposite sides of Havelock Road (with a footbridge going over the road to make moving between the 2 hotels easy). Delegations will be kept together, with each nation’s delegation being assigned to stay in either the Copthorne Kings or the Grand Copthorne Waterfront. Most participants will stay in twin rooms, though single and triple rooms will also be available. All rooms will have private en-suite bathrooms and free wireless internet access. The facilities of both hotels will be available to WSDC participants, and all participants will come together every morning in one of the hotel’s ballrooms for breakfast and a daily briefing session. Both hotels have their own restaurants, swimming pools, jacuzzis, gymnasiums, gift shops and business centres. The Grand Copthorne also has tennis courts and the Copthorne Kings also has a mini golf-putting green. The hotels are located by the banks of the Singapore River. The Great World City shopping complex (one of Singapore largest shopping malls with numerous shops and restaurants and a multi-screen cinema) is less than 5 minutes’ walk away. Clarke Quay, Robertson Quay and China Town are about 10 minutes’ walk from the hotels, and Singapore’s main shopping street, Orchard Road, is a short bus ride away (with regular shuttle buses from Great World City). The central location of the hotels will mean that virtually all the debate and social event venues for the championships will be within half an hour’s travelling distance by coach. copthornekingssingapore grandcopthornewaterfront


Key members of the bid committee

Image courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board

Proposed Co-Convenor – Mark Gabriel
Mark Gabriel served on the organising committee of WSDC 2002 in Singapore as the Tournament Director, and was the Co-Chief Adjudicator of WSDC 2007 in Seoul. He has been a judge at 9 WSDCs since 2000 and has served on the World Schools Debating Council Executive Committee (the committee now know as the Tournament Executive) as the ViceChairman (2007-08) and Secretary (2002-07). Within Singapore, Mark is currently the Tournament Director of the Singapore Secondary Schools Debating Championships (the national championship for students aged 12-16) and the Chief Adjudicator of the Ministry of Education-ACJC Intercollegiate Debating Championships (the national championship for students aged 16-18), and is a former Vice-President and Treasurer of Debate Association Singapore. He is currently a teacher and director of an educational business and regularly conducts debating, public speaking and communication skills courses in schools throughout Singapore. Mark was an active competitive debater for the University of London as an undergraduate and Cambridge University as a postgraduate, and was a Grand Finalist at the European Universities Debating Championships in 1999 in Rotterdam. E-mail:

Proposed Co-Convenor – Evelyn Woels
Evelyn Woels is a Senior Curriculum Specialist in the English Language Unit at Singapore’s Ministry of Education, and currently oversees key aspects of the Ministry’s involvement in debating. Evelyn has been the Team Manager of Singapore’s WSDC team since 2006, and has attended WSDC 7 times in this capacity. Singapore has enjoyed considerable success at WSDC during Evelyn’s time as Team Manager, winning the championship in 2011, finishing runners-up in 2007, reaching the semi-finals on 3 further occasions, and producing the tournament’s topranked individual speaker in 2011 and 2012. Evelyn is also currently one of the officers at the ministry responsible for running the Ministry of Education-ACJC Intercollegiate Debating Championships (Singapore’s national championship for students aged 16-18). E-mail:


Proposed Co-Chief Adjudicator – Aaron Maniam
Aaron Maniam previously served as the Chief Adjudicator of WSDC in 2008 in Washington DC, and will be one of the Co-Chief Adjudicators at WSDC 2013 in Antalya. Aaron first attended WSDC as a debater in 1997 in Bermuda, where he was a member of the Singapore team which reached the semi-finals. He was the co-coach of Singapore’s WSDC team in 2003 in Lima, where the team reached the Grand Final. Within Singapore, Aaron is a former Chief Adjudicator of the Singapore Secondary Schools Debating Championships and a former President of Debate Association Singapore. He currently works as the Director of the Institute for Policy Development at Singapore’s Civil Service College. He has previously served as Deputy Director of Singapore’s Strategic Policy Office, and as First Secretary (Political) at the Singapore Embassy in Washington DC. He was a recipient of the Singapore Youth Award in 2012 for his volunteer work as a youth mentor. He is also a published poet, and his debut collection of poetry, Morning at Memory’s Border, was shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize in 2007. As an undergraduate student at Oxford University, Aaron served as the Chairman of the Oxford Union’s Debates Selection Committee and was a member of the team which won the European Universities Debating Championships in 2000 in Aberdeen. E-mail:

Note: If the bid is successful, Aaron will serve as one of two Chief Adjudicators. A second Chief Adjudicator from outside Singapore will be nominated at a later date.

Proposed Organising Committee Secretary – Dr Vernie Oliveiro
Vernie Oliveiro was the Co-Chief Adjudicator of WSDC 2002 in Singapore. She was a debater on Singapore’s team at WSDC in 1996 in Canberra and in 1997 in Bermuda, reaching the semi-finals on both occasions. Since then, she has since attended WSDC as a judge on 7 occasions. Vernie completed a PhD in the Department of History at Harvard University in 2011. She now works as a researcher at Singapore’s Civil Service College. She is a former Secretary of Debate Association Singapore and a regular judge at schools debating competitions in Singapore. E-mail:

Proposed Organising Committee Treasurer – Anil Singh
Anil Singh currently works as a Business Development Manager in Singapore. His interest in debating was ignited through his daughters, both of whom were very active debaters on the inter-school circuit in Singapore. His elder daughter Rohini was a member of Singapore’s WSDC team in 2001 and 2002 (and was ranked the number 2 speaker of the tournament in 2002). Anil served as the Treasurer of Debate Association Singapore for 4 years, and has strongly supported the development of school-level debating in Singapore over the past several years. E-mail:


Proposed Communications & Registration Officer – Samuel Myat San
Samuel Myat San debated at WSDC 2000 in Pittsburgh as the captain of the Singapore team which reached the quarter-finals. He subsequently went on to Harvard University, where he was the Vice-President of the Harvard Speech and Parliamentary Debate Society and won multiple tournaments on the parliamentary debate circuit in the US, including the 2006 United States Universities Debating Championships (the US national tournament for British Parliamentary debating). He has also returned to WSDC as a judge. Sam is currently a professional debate coach in Singapore. He previously served as the Assistant Director of the Intellectual Property Division at Singapore’s Ministry of Law, and as First Secretary at the Singapore High Commission in New Delhi. He is a former Secretary of Debate Association Singapore. E-mail:

Proposed Logistics Officer – Lucas Li
Lucas Li was a debater on the Singapore team at WSDC 2005 in Calgary, reaching the octofinals. He subsequently went on to debate for Brown University in the United States as an undergraduate and Cambridge University in England as a postgraduate, winning multiple debate titles. He has also judged at numerous school- and university-level debating tournaments. Lucas is currently a manager in the Natural Resources Division of International Enterprise Singapore (a statutory board of Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry). He is also extensively involved in coaching debating teams, judging at tournaments, and organising schools debate events and debate training workshops in Singapore. E-mail:

Proposed Organising Committee Member – Geetha Creffield
Geetha Creffield was the coach of the very first Singapore team to compete at WSDC in 1995. Since then, she has coached Singapore’s team on 11 further occasions – including the 2011 tournament in Dundee where Singapore won the championships, and the 2003 competition in Lima where Singapore finished runners-up. Members of her teams have also finished as the top-ranked speaker at WSDC 3 times (in 2001, 2011 and 2012). Geetha has also attended 3 WSDCs as a judge. She was the Vice-Chairman of World Schools Debating Council Executive Committee from 2008-09, and is currently on the Board of Directors of WSDC Ltd. Geetha was the founding President of Debate Association Singapore and is a former Chief Adjudicator of the Singapore Secondary Schools Debating Championships. She is currently the Head of Arts at Anglo-Chinese Junior College in Singapore. She was a recipient of Singapore’s President’s Award for Teachers in 1998. E-mail:


Proposed Organising Committee Member – Teoh Teik Kee
Teoh Teik Kee is currently a director of 3 listed companies in Singapore and Hong Kong. He is a London-trained Chartered Accountant, and has held senior management roles in banking and stock-broking firms in Singapore and Malaysia. Teik Kee’s son, Teoh Ren Jie, was a member of Singapore’s WSDC team for 5 years from 2008-12. (Ren Jie was the captain of the Singapore team which won the 2011 championships in Dundee, and was the tournament’s top-ranked speaker in both 2011 and 2012.) Teik Kee attended WSDC as an observer in all 5 of the years in which Ren Jie debated at the competition, and is now very excited about helping to bring the event in Singapore. E-mail:

If the bid is successful, the individuals listed here will form the core of the organising committee. Further members will then be added to the organising committee during the coming months.

Photo courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board

Photo courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Advisers to the bid committee
who will continue advising the organising committee if the bid is successful

Adviser – Loke Wing Fatt
Loke Wing Fatt is a Singaporean debate trainer who has been the coach of China’s WSDC team since 2010. He is currently the President of the Society for Associated Inter-Tertiary Debaters (SAID), a Singapore-based non-profit organisation which organises training events and tournaments for school and university debaters across Asia. A former secondary school teacher in Singapore, he has conducted debating workshops in over a dozen different countries over the past 2 decades and has established debating competitions in various nations, including the China National High School Debating Championships. He has been made an Honorary Professor at both North-Eastern University and the Beijing University of Technology for his significant contributions to developing debate education in China. He is also a Fellow of the World Debate Institute at the University of Vermont.

Adviser – Li Shengwu
Li Shengwu was a debater on the Singapore team which reached the Grand Final of WSDC 2003 in Lima. He has since returned to WSDC as a judge on 2 occasions. Shengwu was a member of the Oxford University team which won the European Universities Debating Championships in 2009 in Newcastle. He was also a Grand Finalist at World Universities Debating Championships in 2010 in Antalya, where he was ranked the Best Speaker of the Tournament. He was a Deputy Chief Adjudicator at the European Universities Debating Championships in 2011 Galway, and is due to be the Chief Adjudicator of that competition in 2013 in Manchester. Shengwu is currently a student at Stanford University, where he is working towards a PhD in Economics.

Adviser – Jonathan Yuen
Jonathan Yuen is a lawyer who is currently a Partner in the Commercial Litigation Practice Group and the Head of the Intellectual Property and Technology Group at Harry Elias Partnership LLP, one of Singapore’s largest law firms. Jonathan was a debater on the very first Singapore team to compete at WSDC back in 1995 in Cardiff, where his team reached the quarter-finals. He went on to debate at university level for the National University of Singapore, where he was the captain of the university’s debating team. Jonathan remains very actively involved with schools debating in Singapore today. He is currently the co-ordinator of the annual Harry Elias Partnership LLP National Law Debates (a tournament with a focus on legal issues which is organised and sponsored by his law firm) as well as serving as an adjudicator at other competitions.


Financial matters
At this point in time, we can confirm that the registration fee in Singapore dollars for debaters, coaches, adjudicators and team managers in Singapore Dollars will be no more than S$1,150 per person (which is approximately US$940, €700 or £580 at current exchange rates). If sponsorship allows us to reduce this fee, we will do so. Observers will pay a higher registration fee which will be confirmed in due course. The registration fee will cover 10 nights of accommodation in twin- or triple-sharing hotel rooms, transport to all debate and social event venues, airport transfers on the arrival and departure days, several social events and most meals. (Breakfast will be provided at the hotel every morning during the championships. Lunch will be provided on at least 7 of the days, and dinner will be provided on at least 4-5 of the evenings.) The bid committee is currently in the process of securing sponsorship for the championships. So far we have received pledges from private benefactors, as well as indications of support from public agencies. A number of other potential sponsors have also indicated that they will be willing to come on board once the bid is secured. The organising committee will be focusing on raising as much sponsorship as possible in order to keep registration fees as low as we can.


Draft budget
Accommodation Transport Meals, social events & tours Venue hire Prizes & souvenirs General operations & admin Underwriting & contingency Total S$ 700,000 S$ 20,000 S$ 280,000 S$ 40,000 S$ 10,000 S$ 50,000 S$ 50,000 S$ 1,150,000 Note: All figures are in Singapore dollars

Registration fees Sponsorship Total S$ 575,000 S$ 575,000 S$ 1,150,000

Photo courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Debating and education in Singapore
Debating has been a popular competitive activity between educational institutions in Singapore for several decades. After Singapore began competing in the World Schools Debating Championships in 1995, most of the school-level debating tournaments switched to using the WSDC debate format. Consequently Singapore has a large pool of judges, coaches and debaters who are very familiar with the rules and expectations of WSDC-format debates. The largest debating tournament in Singapore is the annual Singapore Secondary Schools Debating Championships. Over 80 schools enter teams in this event every year, which involves debaters aged 12-16. The competition, which is run by Julia Gabriel Centre and co-organised by Debate Association Singapore, is held over a series of Friday evenings in February to April, with different schools hosting each round. Students complete their ‘secondary school’-level education in Singapore at age 16, when they take their ‘O’-Level examinations. After that, students go on to a junior college or centralised institute (academically-focused institutions where students planning to go on to university take ‘A’Level examinations), or to a polytechnic or a branch of the Institute of Technical Education (which offer more vocationally-based educational programmes). All of these institutions are actively involved in debating, and their national debating championship is run by the Ministry of Education. For the past few years, this highly-competitive event has been hosted in late-May/early-June by Anglo-Chinese Junior College (ACJC) and has been known as the Ministry of Education-ACJC Intercollegiate Debates. Many other smaller debating tournaments involving secondary school and pre-university institutions also take place throughout the year. In recent years, primary school-level debating events involving students aged 12 and below have also begun to develop – the largest of which is the annual Wits and Words competition which is jointly organised by the Ministry of Education and Debate Association Singapore. The university debating scene in Singapore is also very active, with several tournaments being held in Singapore every year. Singapore universities regularly participate in international events such as the World Universities Debating Championships and the Australasian Intervarsity Debating Championships. With well over 100 different educational institutions taking part in debating competitions every year in the small island nation, there will be no shortage of potential host venues for the World Schools Debating Championships in Singapore.


Singapore’s involvement in WSDC
As a competing team
Singapore first entered a team in the World Schools Debating Championships in 1995 in Cardiff, and a Singapore team has competed in every WSDC since then. Over the 18 WSDC tournaments from 1995 to 2012, Singapore has a complied very strong record. Singapore’s team has reached the knock-out stages of every WSDC it has entered – having finished as champions once, runners-up twice, semi-finalists 6 times, quarter-finalists 7 times and octo-finalists twice. Singapore reached the Grand Final of WSDC for the first time in 2003 in Lima, when the team was defeated by Australia. Singapore’s second Grand Final was in 2007 in Seoul, which ended in a loss to Scotland. In 2011 in Dundee, Singapore became the first Asian nation to win WSDC, defeating Australia in the Grand Final. Singapore debaters have also been ranked the best individual speaker at WSDC on 3 occasions. The first time was in 2001 in Johannesburg, when Singapore’s Jonathan Pflug topped the individual speaker tab. Teoh Ren Jie then finished as the number 1 speaker at both the 2011 competition in Dundee and the 2012 tournament in Cape Town.

The Singapore team which won the World Schools Debating Championships in 2011 in Dundee, (from left to right) Ashish Kumar, Teoh Ren Jie, coach Geetha Creffield, team manager Evelyn Woels, Benjamin Mak, Adil Hakeem and Ng Li Ki

As the host nation
Singapore has hosted the World Schools Debating Championships on one previous occasion – in 2002. The organising body for the 2002 championships was Debate Association Singapore (a non-profit organisation established in 1999 to support schools debating in Singapore). The principal sponsor and host was the Singapore International Foundation, with further support and sponsorship coming from 8 different public and private organisations. 19 schools hosted rounds of the championships (8 secondary schools, 8 junior colleges, 2 international schools and 1 university). In the years which have followed, many people who attended the competition have told us that the warm and enthusiastic welcome they received at every school remains their most outstanding memory of the event, and


this is something which we are very confident will be repeated should the championships return to Singapore. The semi-finals in 2002 were held in Singapore’s City Hall and Parliament House. At the Grand Final, which took place in Singapore’s famous Kallang Theatre, an audience of over 1,000 watched Ireland defeat Australia to emerge as champions. On top of the debating, other highlights of WSDC 2002 included opening day activities on Sentosa island, an ‘Asia Nite!’ at the Singapore Khalsa Association, a reception with members of the diplomatic community at Fort Canning Centre, a Singapore heritage trail and a break night party at Hard Rock Café. For 2015, a bid committee has been established which includes some key members of organising committee from the last WSDC in Singapore (including Mark Gabriel, who was the Tournament Director in 2002, and Vernie Oliveiro, who was Co-Chief Adjudicator), along with several other individuals who have become heavily involved in the debating scene in Singapore over the past decade. With the experience of having hosted the championships over a decade ago and the vibrancy of a large debating community which has grown and flourished since the last time we hosted the event, Singapore looks forward to the opportunity to welcome national schools debating teams from across the globe to our small city state once again.

Debaters sample traditional Asian delicacies during the WSDC 2002 opening dinner

Team members try their hand at playing Southeast Asian musical instruments during ‘Asia Nite!’

Singapore’s Minister for Education, Teo Chee Hean (who is now the country’s Deputy Prime Minister), meets the teams at a reception

Noel McGrath of Ireland speaking in the Grand Final against Australia at Singapore’s Kallang Theatre


Memories of the last WSDC in Singapore
“I have many fond memories of WSDC 2002. Not least of them is the spectacular opening ceremony. We were entertained with Indian dancing, Malay bell ringing and a spectacular Chinese lion dance while we all tucked into a splendid traditional Chinese banquet! The audiences at all the Singaporean schools we visited were enthusiastic and extremely welcoming. Spending time in a sunny, vibrant, multi-cultural city was an experience I shall never forget!”

Alex Just (Scotland) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as a debater

“Looking back to the WSDC in Singapore after 10 years, there is no question about it – the organisers managed to put together one of the most memorable championships ever. It was not only the flawless organisation, great venues, captivating city or fascinating debates that made it a great success. WSDC 2002 stands out for the very special feeling among everybody involved – the true spirit of debating.”

Ragnar Siil (Estonia) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as an adjudicator

“I have great memories from WSDC 2002 in Singapore. It was my second year participating as a debater and I remember being amazed not only by the impressive organisation and efficiency in how everything was run, but also for the great opportunities to socialise and to get to know the country and the culture. It was definitely one of those defining moments in my life by the impact it had on me, both from a debating perspective and also from an inter-cultural and international point of view.”

Dana Schottlaender (Argentina) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as a debater

“I remember that every school we visited in Singapore greeted us not just with amazing hospitality, but with full auditoriums of excited students. I had never debated in front of so many people and it was very motivating to have this many people hear what you have to say.”

Irena Kotíková (Czech Republic) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as a debater

“I remember Singapore 2002 for very high levels of hospitality and organisation. The host schools made us feel exceptionally welcome and there were notably large and attentive audiences, even for preliminary round contests. The compact nature of the city made transport quick and easy, and the food was great!”

Ian MacMullen (England) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as an adjudicator

“WSDC Singapore was flawlessly organised and an outstanding experience. I especially appreciated the large audiences and warm welcomes at schools during preliminary rounds, including a string orchestra performance. There was an unforgettable dance performance at the break night party, ending with a human pyramid! Those are just a few examples of the attention the organisation paid to details that made a difference to me as a young debater and hopefully inspired other students in Singapore – not to mention the interesting sights of such a multicultural place.”

Eva Spoor (Netherlands) attended WSDC 2002 in Singapore as a debater


General information about Singapore
Once a humble fishing village, Singapore today is a bustling cosmopolitan city filled with a mix of high-rise buildings and landscaped gardens. Located at the heart of Southeast Asia, the island nation has a land area of about 710 square kilometres. At present, Singapore’s population stands at about 5 million people consisting primarily of the Chinese, Malay, Indian and Eurasian communities. Each community has brought its own mix of culture, religion, food and language to the city state, giving Singapore a reputation a “cultural melting pot”. Singapore has four official languages: English, Mandarin, Malay and Tamil. English is the common language spoken by almost everyone in the country and is the language of business and government and the medium of instruction in schools. Most Singaporeans are bilingual, speaking both English and another language. 2015 will mark Singapore’s 50th anniversary as an independent nation. In half a century, Singapore’s society has undergone many transformations. Accompanying rapid economic development, over the past couple of decades there has been an increasing emphasis on artistic and cultural development and the growth of a more active citizenry. In recent years, Singapore has witnessed a growing interest in and encouragement of public discourse, as well as an increasing awareness among Singapore’s citizens of developments which affect the country and the region. The privilege of hosting the World School Debating Championships will undoubtedly help to enhance these areas of development in Singapore’s golden jubilee year.

International flights to Singapore come into Singapore Changi Airport. One of the main aviation hubs in Asia, there are direct flights into the airport available from most of the world’s major travel hubs. Changi Airport is widely considered to be one of the best airports in the world and has won numerous international awards. It has been ranked in the top 3 in the Skytrax World’s Best Airport Awards every year since 2001. Located on the east coast of Singapore, the airport is about 25 minutes’ drive from the city centre.

Most foreign visitors to Singapore do not require visas for visits of 30 days or less. Citizens of the following countries are currently required to obtain visas before travelling to Singapore: Afghanistan, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Belarus, China, Egypt, Georgia, India, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Moldova, Morocco, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Yemen.
Photos courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board



Singapore is located about 85 miles from the equator and has a tropical climate all year round. Temperatures generally range from 2332°C (73-90°F). Relative humidity averages around 75%. While it’s generally bright and sunny throughout the year, short but heavy rain showers are also common

The currency used in Singapore is the Singapore Dollar (S$). At the beginning of 2013, approximate exchange rates were as follows: US Dollar – US$1.00 = S$1.20 Euro – €1.00 = S$1.60 Pound Sterling – £1.00 = S$2.00

Singapore is famous for its food. From chilli crab, to Hainanese chicken rice, to Malay sambal dishes, Indian roti prata and much, much more, those with adventurous taste buds will not be disappointed. Those who are pathologically addicted to hamburgers, pizza and Coke, will also find that Singapore is not lacking in major international chains like McDonalds, Burger King, KFC and Pizza Hut to stop those withdrawal syndromes from attacking. The island has plenty of restaurants and food centres to suit all tastes and budgets. Meals at local food courts or fast food restaurants can easily be found for S$6.00 or less.

Singapore’s population encompasses people of many different faiths, including Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Taoism, Hinduism, Sikhism and Judaism. Visitors will be able to find places of worship for numerous different faiths during their stay in Singapore.

Places of Interest
The bid committee plans to include visits to at least a few of the places listed below in the WSDC 2015 itinerary, either as optional tours or as venues for opening day activities or social events. Other places listed will be within easy reach for participants who wish to explore them.

Sentosa Island
We held the opening day activities of the 2002 championships on this offshore island which is connected to Singapore by a bridge, a monorail train and cable cars. As well as several beaches, the island is also home to the Universal Studios amusement park, the MegaZip Adventure Park, the Sentosa Luge, a Butterfly Park, the Dolphin
Photos courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Lagoon, Underwater World and Marine Life Park aquatic features, the famous Sentosa Musical Fountain, and the historic Fort Siloso.

Wildlife experiences
Located within 40 hectares of forest by the Upper Seletar Reservoir, the Singapore Zoo is world famous not only for its range of over 300 animal species displayed in naturalistic landscaped enclosures, but also for its Rainforest Walk attraction, its animal shows and for offering visitors that chance to enjoy Breakfast with the Orangutans. Singapore also has 3 other major wildlife attractions. The Night Safari is the world’s first nocturnal zoo, offering the chance to see over 1000 animals in an environment in which they are rarely witnessed. The recently-opened River Safari gives visitors the chance to travel around a wildlife park by boat and view animals in the lush jungle around the banks of Mandai Lake. The Jurong Bird Park offers the chance to view over 350 bird species in different environments, including the world’s largest walk-in aviary.

Nature experiences
The newly-opened 101-acre Gardens by the Bay offers visitors the chance to relax in a 2 kilometre waterfront promenade on the edge of the city, view over 250,000 rare plants in huge domed conservatories, and climb spectacular 16-storey eco-friendly manmade Supertrees around the Marina Reservoir. The Singapore Botanic Gardens boasts the world’s largest display of orchids amidst sprawling landscaped gardens in the heart of the city. If you’re looking for a more rustic experience, the natural environments of Bukit Timah Nature Reserve, MacRitchie Reservoir Park, Labrador Nature Reserve or the Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve offer the chance to experience this part of the world in a more natural state.

Taking in the sights
If you’re looking for a bird’s eye view of Singapore, the world’s tallest Ferris wheel, the Singapore Flyer, offers the opportunity to take in the city from a vantage point 165 metres off the ground. Another great way to view Singapore is from the Skydeck at the Marina Bay Sands hotel, overlooking the Marina Bay Street Circuit where the annual Formula One motor race takes place.

From the historical displays at the National Museum, the Asian Civilisations Museum and the Changi Museum, to cutting-edge innovations at the ArtScience Museum and the Singapore Science Centre, to quirkier places of interest like the MINT Museum of Toys and the Maritime Experiential Museum, Singapore has no lack of exhibitions and displays to suit all tastes.

Singapore is well known as a shopping destination. The main retail and entertainment hub in the centre of town is Orchard Road, a 2 kilometre-long stretch packed with shopping malls and other places of interest which is among the world’s best-know shopping streets. If you’re looking for more uniquely Asian shopping and cultural experiences, you’ll discover pockets of Old World charm traditions all over the island in places like China Town, Little India and Kampong Glam.

Photos courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board


Photos courtesy of Singapore Tourism Board





15 December 2012 The Members of the Tournament Committee World Schools Debating Championships Dear Delegates,

Support for Singapore’s bid to host the World Schools Debating Championships in 2015
Debate Association (Singapore) would like to express its warm and enthusiastic support for Singapore’s bid to host the World Schools Debating Championships in 2015. Debate Association (Singapore) was founded in 1999 to support the development of school-level debating in Singapore. To that end we brought the World Schools Debating Championships to Singapore as the organising body for the 2002 WSDC championships, with the support of the Singapore International Foundation who were the principal sponsors and hosts. The current bid committee includes our association’s founding President, Geetha Creffield, another of our former Presidents, Aaron Maniam, our former Vice-President, Mark Gabriel, our former Treasurer, Anil Singh, and two of our former Secretaries, Vernie Oliveiro and Samuel Myat San. All of these people still maintain close connections with our association and have made very considerable contributions to the development of schools debating in Singapore. Together with the other members of the bid committee, we have no doubt that they will make an excellent organising team. We are very excited about the prospect of the World Schools Debating Championships returning to Singapore in 2015. If the bid is successful, Debate Association (Singapore) as well as the wider schools debating community will give our full support to the organising committee, and provide whatever organisational assistance we can to help make the event a success. We look forward to a successful bid. Yours Sincerely,

Emmanuel Paul Ng President Debate Association (Singapore)


17th December 2012 The Tournament Committee World Schools Debating Championships Dear Delegates, Letter of Support for the Bid for Singapore WSDC 2015 My name is Loke Wing Fatt, President of the Society for Associated Inter-Tertiary Debaters (SAID) in Singapore. SAID is a non-profit debate education organisation established in 2003 in Singapore to promote the benefits of debate as a personal growth and self-development activity among the youths of the world. More information about SAID could be found at this website: I wish to state very clearly that SAID fully supports Singapore’s bid to host the World Schools Debating Championships in 2015. SAID will work closely with the Bid Committee for Singapore WSDC 2015 and provide all the necessary help to make the Tournament a resounding success and one for all the participants to remember for a long time to come. My best wishes to the Bid Committee for Singapore WSDC 2015 and we look forward to seeing the WSDC debating community in our sunny island-state very soon!

Thank you. Best regards,

Loke Wing Fatt President Society for Associated Inter-Tertiary Debaters (SAID) Singapore Website:

104 Lengkong Tiga, #04-365, Singapore 410104



Fun facts
 There has been at least one member of Singapore’s WSDC 2015 bid committee at every WSDC since 1995.  If you add together the number of times that each member of Singapore’s bid committee has attended WSDC,

the total number is 53.
 3 members of Singapore’s bid committee have served as Chief Adjudicator of WSDC.  4 members of Singapore’s bid committee have judged the WSDC Grand Final a total of 9 times between them.  4 members of Singapore’s bid committee have attended WSDC as a debater (3 of them once and 1 of them

 At WSDC 2002 in Singapore, Ireland became the 7th nation to win the championships (joining Australia, Cana-

da, England, New Zealand, Scotland and the United States as championship-winning countries). Since then, only one further nation has won WSDC – Singapore in 2011.
 The largest delegation of debaters, coaches, adjudicators and observers Singapore sent to a WSDC outside

Singapore was 19 (in Lima in 2003).
 The record number of times a debater from Singapore has competed at WSDC is 5 (and his parents also

attended all 5 of those WSDCs as observers).
 Singapore is the only Asian nation to have won WSDC, and one of only 2 Asian nations to have reached the

Grand Final (the other being Pakistan).
 2 members of Singapore’s bid committee have competed against each other in the Grand Final of the Europe-

an Universities Debating Championships.
 2 members of Singapore’s bid committee have (literally) entered a lion’s den while attending a WSDC.


Bid to host the 2015 World Schools Debating Championships in Singapore