29 Apr
19:00 - 20:30

Looking back on The Maastricht Debate 2019

On 29 April in Maastricht, Bas Eickhout (European Green Party), Frans Timmermans (Party of European Socialists), Violeta Tomić (Party of the European Left), Guy Verhofstadt (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe) and Jan Zahradil (Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe) battled out key issues on the future of Europe. The Maastricht Debate 2019 was livestreamed by POLITICO Europe. Over 50 universities and other organisations around Europe organised debate-watching events. Straight after the debate there were 133.500 live viewers of the stream. Current number of viewers is 200.000.

In front of an audience of 500 young people and in the presence of a wide range of national and international media, the debaters answered questions along three main themes: Digital Europe, Future of Europe, and Sustainable Europe, a theme sourced by a survey conducted by Maastricht University.

The moderators, Rianne Letschert, rector of Maastricht University, and Ryan Heath, political editor at Politico, made sure that the debate kept the audience intrigued with direct and spicy questions, which had to be answered in a maximum of 1.5 minutes by each candidate.

And the winner is...

During the debate, the audience could vote for the best debater. The winner was Frans Timmermans, with Bas Eickhout as runner-up.

The Maastricht Debate 2019 was organised by the three partners of Maastricht, Working on Europe: Maastricht University, the City of Maastricht and the Province of Limburg - as well as the European Youth Forum and the European Journalism Centre.

Live viewing party

During and after the debate, Studio Europa organised a Live Viewing Party with food trucks, cosy seating, live music, a pop-up I am so Angry photobooth and the What’s Up Europe? info-market. In a pleasant and inspiring environment, many people, young and old, got the chance to meet some of the diverse organisations that are working on their future Europe and to strike up a conversation. After the live-viewing there was an on stage aftershow analysis with Are We Europe | #ProveThemWrong | Volt | Iron Curtain Project | Kiesvrouwen. The evening ended with DJ’s and silent disco.

Did you miss the livestream? Don’t worry, you can still watch it here. Also read what Philip Schacht, one of UM's master's students, had to say about the debate.

Upcoming event: Student debate with European parliamentarians on 14 May

You might also be interested in the student debate with European parliamentarians (MEPs) on 14 May at the Bonbonnière in Maastricht. During this debate, you can express your opinion and hear from MEPs on important issues in Europe, such as working and studying at home and abroad, or security and migration in Europe. Registration closes on Friday, 3 May.

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