Come back Obama! Seven reasons to join us for the 18th European Speechwriter Network Conference at Queen’s College, Oxford

10 January 2019

1) To remember what sanity feels like

ELOQUENCE, sensitivity, good manners – these were the political virtues espoused by Barack and Michelle Obama in the White House.

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Interview with Alexander Stubb

24 October 2018

For our 17th conference, we had the privilege of welcoming a former Prime Minister to speak about the challenges he faces when he gives speeches.

Not only was Alexander Stubb the former leader of a European country, during our conference, he was preparing his campaign to be the Spitzencandidat for the election to become President of the European Commission. We were able to talk to him in a short interview.

Speechwriting: The Finnish Perspective

24 October 2018

Earlier this month we had our first conference in Helsinki, Finland.

This prompted a flurry of interest from the national broadcasting organisation Fle. They featured some of our members, who were speaking at the conference, in a political magazine programme.

These are the bits they posted to their website in English.

A Young Person’s Guide to Speechwriting

20 July 2018

The European Speechwriter Network has filmed a video to promote ‘oracy’ and encourage young people to take an interest in speechwriting.

The 13-minute video was filmed in King’s College, Cambridge during the European Speechwriter Network spring conference.

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European Speechwriter Network Privacy Statement

24 May 2018

This policy explains what you can expect from us and what we need from you in relation to your personal data. Please read this carefully as this policy is legally binding when you use our services.

When you pay for a subscription, we collect your data. We communicate with you through our email newsletter and, when appropriately as an individual. We send you a welcome pack to the address you give to us. Unless you signal to us otherwise, we announce your new membership in our email newsletter and link to your LinkedIn page or Twitter account.

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The ESN Gavel

20 October 2017

When you organise conferences, you’re often sent samples of merchandise.

Companies try to sell you tat to put in goody bags or branded items to give authority to your event.

I had a very persistent salesman recently trying to sell me biros.

I finally managed to shake him off when I told him that our crowd liked crafted items – the sort of thing you find on Etsy.

Then I found on Etsy a man who made gavels. I couldn’t be certain the quality and style would be just right, but I decided to take the risk.

I’ve ended up with a beautifully designed and branded gavel, which will be a quirky feature of our conferences in the future.

The item cost £55, plus £3.99 postage.

Get one of our new limited-edition enamel mugs

21 August 2017

Impress your friends, lift your thoughts, frighten away Brexiteers.

We’ve created the must-have accessory for a professional speechwriter – a European Speechwriter Network mug.

It can be used for your coffee, or alternatively it makes a very fine pot to store your pencils.

It also makes the perfect present for the speechwriter who has everything.

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The Line-Up for Leuven 2017

18 July 2017

A Twitter account may win you the Presidency of the United States, but in European democracies traditional speechmaking is still a vital skill.

Amidst the social and political upheaval, speechwriters from around the world will gather this autumn near Brussels in Belgium to share their expertise and calm their fractious nerves.

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Demystifying Dominic Cummings – Why Smart People need Speechwriters

13 June 2017

Language most shows a man. Speak that I may see thee.

This quotation from the playwright, Ben Johnson, is the raison d’être for speechwriters. Public speaking gives us an intimate view of the speaker. The speaker can choose to write something for herself or himself, but it’s very easy to ‘leak the truth from every pore’, that is to say: reveal things about yourself that are irrelevant or inappropriate that damage the case or alienate the audience.

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In Praise of Competitive Rhetorical Exercises

25 April 2017

We have developed a tradition at our conferences – at least it has run for the last two. It’s an after-dinner speaking contest.

The idea came from the Dutch, who are great supporters of the event.

Renée Broekmeulen, who chaired the LMH conference in 2016, asked the audience to call out some words summarising each presentation. She selected three from each.

Then, at the end of the first day, she wrote them all down on a flipchart and invited delegates to write a speech incorporating each of the words.

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