About ISDS



Debate is a rigorous exercise in critical thinking that enables young minds build effective communication skills that are necessary in an increasingly competitive world.
It develops the confidence of students from a very young age, and pushes them to work well in teams, while retaining their individuality during the process. It empowers them through knowledge, and develops their understanding about events all around the world. From the ability to evaluate Indian foreign policy, to that of having a discussion on using genetically modified crops to combat world hunger, it allows students engage more constructively with their academic curriculum. Debating opens minds up to a multitude of options, and teaches us that no problem is ever without solutions. It makes individuals ask smart questions, think outside the box, and become change-makers for their societies.

History and Mission

The Indian Schools Debating Society (ISDS) is a not-for-profit organization, powered by the Ramco Group of Companies, that aims to take competitive debating to students across India. Since its inception in 2008 in Chennai, when a mere 5 schools came together to learn debating, ISDS has taken on activities every year to encourage students to bloom into mature and politically involved problem solvers. A pioneer in bringing the ‘World Schools Debating Championship’ format of debating to India, ISDS continually trains young Indians with the assistance of the best debaters from around the world, creating a new pool of ever growing fierce Indian debaters that are eager to give back.

As the official representative of India at the World Schools Debating Championship, an annual event where countries face off against each other for the championship title, ISDS, in 2016-17 alone, has reached out to more than 200 schools (private, KV, and Teach for India) in more than 10 cities across the country as part of its national selection process. Year on year for the last 9 years, ISDS has completely sponsored teams to compete at the international stage, building a strong network of alumni that run the coaching and activities of the organization. For the first time in 2017, ISDS sponsored a team of two members (who are on the Indian National Team and the Indian Development Squad selected by them for 2017) to participate at the ‘International Competition for Young Debaters’.


With the support of the Ramco Group of Companies, ISDS initially spread its activities all over Chennai, slowly building much needed expertise in a new and exciting format, before beginning to expand its activities to schools in Bangalore, Delhi, Kolkata, Pune, Trivandrum, Cochin, and Dehradun. ISDS has consistently provided intense coaching in debate to hundreds of students, with the ultimate aim of integrating this format of debating into the heart of our education process, inspiring organized thought and speech in the minds of students between the ages of 13 and 18.

The ISDS has represented India in international debating competitions, including the World Schools Debating Championship (2008-2015), Russell McVeagh Debating Championships, New Zealand (2011), Asia World Schools Debating Championship (2014, 2016) and the International Competition for Young Debaters (2017).

In addition to equipping students, ISDS also frequently hosts teacher training programmes where trainers work with teachers to integrate debating into teaching school curriculum, while also orienting them into the process of being on adjudication panels in debating tournaments, thus bringing them into the fold of this vibrant and inclusive activity.

We hope you join us in realizing our dream of spreading debate in Indian Schools and enrich our ever evolving process!

ISDS has represented India in several international debating competitions, including the World Schools Debating Championship, since its inception in 2008.

About our Sponsor

Ramco Group is one of India’s most respected groups and has achieved international recognition for its quality products and services. The group has well-diversified interests spanning from textiles, cement, building materials to software solutions.

The Ramco Cements Limited is one of India’s largest cement companies with a capacity of 16.5 MTPA manufactured across eight state-of-the-art plants across India. It was the first cement company to introduce world class machinery and processes, among the first to promote blended cements and to manufacture Ready Mix Concrete and Dry Mortar Plasters, as well as to undertake the most expansive computerization drive in South India.

Ramco Industries Limited is one of India’s leading building materials company manufacturing Calcium Silicate Boards & Tiles, Fibre Cement Boards & Tiles and Roofing Sheets. These green products meet international standards, offer eco-friendly alternatives and are being exported across the world.

Rajapalayam Mills is acknowledged as the most efficient spinning mill in the industry and has set the industry standard for quality and price in cotton yarn manufacture along with Sudarsanam Spinning Mills, Sri Vishnu Shankar Mill, Rajapalaiyam Spintext, Sri Ramco Spinners, Sandhya Spinning Mill and Rajapalaiyam Textiles. The Ramaraju Surgical Cotton Mills manufactures surgical dressings and yarn to international standards.

Ramco Systems is part of this USD 1 Billion diversified conglomerate. Headquartered in Chennai, the company has 21 offices spread across India, USA, Canada, Europe, Australia, Middle East, South Africa and APAC. The company focuses on providing innovative business solutions – ERP, HR and Aviation – that can be delivered quickly and cost-effectively in complex environments.