The Lafayette Debates is an international platform for student dialogue and debate founded by the Embassy of France to the United States and The George Washington University in the belief that now, more than ever, a vigorous and respectful transatlantic dialogue is of the utmost importance not only to the citizens of France and the United States, but also the world. 

The Lafayette Debates tradition began in 1824 during the "hero's tour" to the United States of General Marquis de Lafayette and his son, George Washington Lafayette. The Lafayette Debates were revived in 2013 by Emilienne Baneth-Nouailhetas, former Attache for University Cooperation, and Paul S. Hayes, Director of Debate for The George Washington University Debate & Literary Society. For more information on the history of the Lafayette Debates, click here.

The 2020 Lafayette Debates U.S. National Championship will be held at the Embassy of France to the United States in Washington DC on April 3-4, 2020. The Lafayette Debates awards ceremony will take placeat La Maison Fran├žaise.                              


The 2020 Lafayette Debates will challenge U.S. students to scrutinize the following topic, "Corporations should prioritize stakeholder value over shareholder value." During the debates, students will research and critique corporate social responsibility. Debates will occur at locations across the nation over the Spring semester, culminating at the Embassy of France in Washington DC. For 2020 Lafayette Debates tournament information, click here.