Letter from the President

Dear members, friends, current and future debaters,

Debating is a skill we use every day in our lives. We all have issues we care about, from the political to the philosophical, from the scientific to the imaginary, and it is debating that can provide the tools to discuss these things with the nuance and care they deserve.

The Edinburgh Debates Union was established in 1890 and is the second oldest student society at the university. We do not rest on the laurels of our prestige however, today we seek to be a society that is as inclusive as it can possibly be. The Union will accept and teach anyone who is willing. We will listen to you and help you get to any kind of level you want to achieve. Whether that’s becoming a world class competitive debater, improving your public speaking skills, or just having access to some of the highest quality discourse in the country, EUDU is here for you.

Speaking personally, EUDU has helped me find some of the best friends I could ever have hoped for. The Union prioritises acceptance, tolerance and friendliness combined with a desire to promote successful teams at competitions of all levels. We accommodate both competitive members, and those who wish to watch, learn or meet new people. We are an extended family for you and each other while you are at university and you’re sure to meet friends for life here. As President I will do my utmost to ensure that positive ethos is maintained throughout the year. We stand for free speech, but free speech is only truly free if everyone is included. I will strive to ensure EUDU is always a safe space for its members and that there is sufficient accountability and access to a place at the podium. 

I really believe in the work we do, and our growth and success as a union over the last few years speaks to that belief. I could not be prouder to be President of a Union with such a record and the matching potential for the future and our committee is dedicated to delivering on this message just as much as I am. 

We are really looking forward to meeting and working with you all and welcoming you to the Union.


Best wishes,

Nathanael Clifton

President 2019-20