2021 Donner Prize Winner Announced

May 31, 2022

The winner of the 2021 Donner Prize was announced today by Gregory Belton, Chair of the Donner Canadian Foundation, during a gala dinner in Toronto.

Dan Breznitz was awarded the $50,000 Donner Prize for Innovation in Real Places: Strategies for Prosperity in an Unforgiving World, published by Oxford University Press.

Innovation in Real Places differentiates between innovation and invention, focussing on the diverse types of innovation and the role of government to facilitate, and not impede, the process.

Dan Breznitz, winner of the 2021 Donner Prize

The jury declared the book “essential reading for anyone interested in policy for industry, science, finance, competition, and regional development. There is little doubt that innovation is the key driver of economic progress, and Breznitz provides the most interesting and innovative take on the process of innovation in promoting community-wide development. He goes well beyond the current fetish of focusing on the highest end of technology in an attempt to emulate the admired, but inequitable, features of Silicon Valley. He urges communities to focus on the stage of the production process that allows them to realize their own advantages and build an ecosystem that fosters surprising forms of specialized innovation.”

The other nominated titles, each of which received $7,500, were:

  • Value(s): Building a Better World for All by Mark Carney (Signal/M&S)
  • Stand On Guard: Reassessing Threats to Canada’s National Security by Stephanie Carvin (University of Toronto Press)
  • Indigenomics: Taking a Seat at the Economic Table by Carol Anne Hilton, MBA (New Society Publishers)
  • Neglected No More: The Urgent Need to Improve the Lives of Canada’s Elders in the Wake of a Pandemic by André Picard (Random House of Canada)

The winner of the Donner Prize was selected by the six-member jury: David A. Dodge (Jury Chair), Jean-Marie Dufour, Brenda Eaton, Louise Fréchette, Karen Restoule, and Frederic Wien.

DCF Chair Gregory S. Belton, Donner Prize winner Dan Breznitz, and DCF Governor Anita Winsor

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