The goal of debate is to work together to come up with the best answer. There should be no “winners” or “losers.” A good norm is to ask participants to switch roles halfway through each debate. This makes sure that people are listening to each other, and helps them keep focused on coming up with the best answer and letting go of egos/ positions. The sole product of the debate should be a careful summary of the facts and issues that emerged, a clearer definition of the choices going forward, and a recommendation to keep debating or to move on to a decision.
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