Radical Debate Chamber

6 September 2016


Venue: Function Room

Organiser: Common Knowledge

Common Knowledge is an emerging network of activist-educators skilled in participatory facilitation techniques. We have hosted events like Corbynomics in London and are in the process of training others so they can facilitate their own participatory events. We're early stage so still building our profile.

An evening series of interactive and highly participatory debates on radical political issues. Speakers are given only a few minutes to make their cases for and against before the facilitator brings the floor in to make a series of one minute contributions. The speakers are not experts and the floor debate makes up the majority of the discussion time. The style is fast paced with lots of quick fire reactions and interventions. One side of the room is designated as ‘for’ and the other one ‘against’. Participants physically move on the spectrum between for and against as the debate progresses. They are encouraged to move as they are persuaded by arguments in real time. Speakers are given two minute rebuttals in the middle of the discussion, and then a final two minute summation at they end. The final count is taken and participants must make a decision for, against or abstain. Given the timing of the festival, we’ll definitely run one on the EU referendum question, ‘In or Out?’. Other debate questions could include, ‘do you have to bring down capitalism to save the environment?’, ‘Can the Labour Party be a vehicle for radical change?’, etc. Proabably have enough time for three 30/45 min debates with time for drinks in between each.