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Donner Prize goes to book critiquing scope of prime minister’s power

A book criticizing the ever-growing influence of Canada’s Prime Minister’s Office has won the $50,000 Donner Prize.

The Donner Canadian Foundation named Democratizing the Constitution: Reforming Responsible Government by Peter Aucoin, Mark D. Jarvis, and Lori Turnbull (Emond Montgomery Publications) the best book on public policy by a Canadian author Tuesday night at a gala in Toronto.

In a press release, the prize jury called the book “an important and timely book — one that calls into question the legitimacy of our most fundamental institutions of democracy.” The jury was made up of Anne McLellan, acting academic director at University of Alberta’s Institute for United States Policy Studies; Marcel Boyer, professor emeritus at Université de Montréal; Wendy Dobson, professor at University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management; Kevin Lynch, vice-chair of BMO Financial Group; and Denis Stairs, professor emeritus at Dalhousie University.

It was a bittersweet win for Democratizing the Constitution – co-author Aucoin, a professor emeritus of political science and public administration at Dalhousie University, passed away in July.

The other finalists, who each received $7,500, were:

  • Toward Improving Canada’s Skilled Immigration Policy: An Evaluation Approach by Charles M. Beach, Alan G. Green, and Christopher Worswick (C.D. Howe Institute)
  • Museum Pieces: Toward the Indigenization of Canadian Museums by Ruth B. Phillips (McGill-Queen’s University Press)
  • XXL: Obesity and the Limits of Shame by Neil Seeman and Patrick Luciani (University of Toronto Centre for Public Management)

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Book Pictures

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Eva Stachniak's Empress of the Night

Eva Stachniak poses with a copy of her book, Empress of the Night

Tea and snacks inspired by Eva Stachniak's Empress of the Night

Rimma Burashko with author Eva Stachniak

Eva Stachniak talks to the audience about the best and worst of Catherine the Great's favourites

Eva Stachniak smiles as she signs a copy of Empress of the Night for a fan

Fans wait in line to have their copies of Empress of the Night signed by Eva Stachniak

Fans wait in line to have their copies of Empress of the Night signed by Eva Stachniak

Lesley Strutt, Dean Steadman, Amanda Earl, Alastair Larwill and Frances Boyle

Frances Boyle, Dean Steadman, Lesley Strutt and Alastair Larwill

Amanda Earl

Jewel of the Thames launch

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