2019/2020 DONNER PRIZE WINNER ANNOUNCED
BREAKDOWN: THE PIPELINE DEBATE AND THE THREAT TO CANADA’S FUTURE WINS THE $50,000 PRIZE
TORONTO, September 16, 2020 – The winner of the 2019/2020 Donner Prize was announced today by Ken Whyte, Chair of the Donner Canadian Foundation, in an online presentation.
Dennis McConaghy was awarded the $50,000 Donner Prize for Breakdown: The Pipeline Debate and the Threat to Canada’s Future, published by Dundurn Press.
Breakdown offers a comprehensive analysis of the ongoing debate in Canada over oil and pipelines, exploring the country’s political polarization via economic, environmental, and political perspectives. McConaghy is a Canadian energy executive, with 40 years experience in infrastructure development.
In their deliberations, the Jury said of Breakdown, “it addresses arguably one of the most contentious and consequential sets of policy issues facing Canada today – the nexus of resource development, climate change, Indigenous rights and Alberta alienation. It presents the history of four pipeline projects and overlays the political decisions that have resulted in many projects not being supported or being delayed significantly. McConaghy outlines several pragmatic strategies that can be used to reduce or remove the bottleneck to move large infrastructure projects forward (or create earlier certainty that they should not) so that investment (domestic and foreign) will be attracted to Canada.
The other nominated titles, each of which received $7,500, were:
EMPTY PLANET: The Shock of Global Population Decline, by Darrell Bricker and John Ibbitson (Signal/McClelland & Stewart
LIVING WITH CHINA: A Middle Power Finds Its Way, by Wendy Dobson (Rotman-UTP Publishing/University of Toronto Press)
THE WEALTH OF FIRST NATIONS, by Tom Flanagan (Fraser Institute)
THE TANGLED GARDEN: A Canadian Cultural Manifesto for the Digital Age, by Richard Stursberg with Stephen Armstrong (James Lorimer & Co.)
The winner of the Donner Prize was chosen from an impressive list of 74 submissions by a five-member jury: David A. Dodge, (Jury Chair), Elizabeth Cannon, Jean-Marie Dufour, Brenda Eaton, and Peter Nicholson.
The Jury Chair commented on this year’s shortlist: “The purpose of the Donner Prize – to foster researching and writing about the policy dilemmas we face as a society and a nation – is more critical in today’s media environment than ever. Our shortlist reflects issues that, until very recently were centre stage in our national dialogue, and certainly will be again – the coming decline of global population, Canada’s relationship with China, the pipeline debate, First Nations financing and the future of Canadian culture in a digital age. These books are exemplars of the goals of the Donner Prize.”
The Donner Prize, established in 1998, annually rewards excellence and innovation in Canadian public policy thinking, writing and research. In bestowing this award, the Donner Canadian Foundation seeks to broaden policy debates, increase general awareness of the importance of policy decision making and make an original and meaningful contribution to policy discourse.