Structured Debate

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"A structured debate is a dispute resolution technique which breaks down the elements of a disagreement into the smallest arguable chunks ("points"), clearly indicating the dependencies between supporting points and the larger points they support or attack.

This helps to prevent a number of common problems with discussions of complex issues:\

  • accidentally (or deliberately) taking opposing points out of context, and answering them as if the context didn't exist
  • the feeling of getting "lost" in the argument due to not knowing what has been settled and what remains to be discussed
  • significant points falling by the wayside and remaining unanswered
  • conflating multiple points into a single point, which leads easily to making logical fallacies."



  • Argumentrix [1] is attempting to stage what appears to be loosely-structured debates using MediaWiki as a platform
  • Issuepedia [2] is working on a set of rules for structured debate, eventually to be turned into an internet application with a web interface

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