HELLIWELL, John F.




In 2003, John F. Helliwell won the $25,000 Donner Prize for best book about Canadian public policy for Globalization and Well-Being by John F. Helliwell (UBC Press $19.95). 0774809930 He was also the UBC-based author of How Much do National Borders Matter? (Brookings Institution Press, 1998) and the co-editor of The Contribution of Human and Social Capital to Sustained Economic Growth and Well-Being (Ottawa: Human Resources Development Canada and OECD, 2001), with Aneta Bonikowska.

[BCBW 2004]

John F. Helliwell wins $25,000 Donner Prize
Press Release



Toronto, Thursday, May 8, 2003 - The winner of the prestigious Donner Prize, the award for best book on Canadian public policy, and two runners-up were announced this evening by Allan Gotlieb, Chairman of the Donner Canadian Foundation, at an awards dinner at the Art Gallery of Ontario. The 2002 award marks the fifth anniversary of this distinguished prize, which is awarded annually.

The $25,000 Donner Prize was awarded to John F. Helliwell for his book GLOBALIZATION AND WELL-BEING, published by UBC Press. In his book, described by the Donner Jury as "superb and elegant," Helliwell emphasizes well-being as an explicit focus for research and the formation of public policy. Researchers and policymakers are taking a new look at public policies to find broader grounds for assessing their economic and social impacts on individuals, families, communities, and nations.

"GLOBALIZATION AND WELL-BEING is provocative, well written and thoughtful, as well as masterful in presentation - Helliwell does not waste a word or relevant thought," said jury Chairman Grant Reuber. He goes on to say "it should be read well beyond our borders as perhaps the most persuasive rebuttal to date to the anti-globalization movement."

GLOBALIZATION AND WELL-BEING boldly challenges several of the currently accepted wisdoms: that globalization has reduced the effectiveness of national borders and the salience of the nation state; that national or domestic policy is considerably less effective than in earlier years of less open nation-states; and that national decisions, with regard to international policy, have become considerably less relevant.

Helliwell argues that education, health, social, and other domestic policies must reflect domestic priorities. In judging the consequences of these policies it is important to broaden the notion of costs and benefits, as conventionally defined, to take into account social capital and to redefine costs and benefits to reflect "well-being." Only thus can Canadians ensure the election of governments that reflect their values and ensure that Canada does not unwittingly drift in directions that threaten its future well-being.

John F. Helliwell is a Professor of Economics at the University of British Columbia. His research and publications have covered many aspects of economics and public policy. He was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 1976, an Officer in the Order of Canada in 1987 and held the Brenda and David McLean Chair of Canadian Studies from 1999 to 2001.

The two $10,000 runner-up honours went to Christopher Essex and Ross McKitrick for TAKEN BY STORM: The Troubled Science, Policy and Politics of Global Warming (Key Porter Books) and Daniel Stoffman for WHO GETS IN: What's Wrong with Canada's Immigration Program - and How to Fix It (Macfarlane Walter & Ross).

TAKEN BY STORM: The Troubled Science, Policy and Politics of Global Warming explains the science of climate change and examines the theory of global warming. "An extremely well-crafted and fascinating read," said the Donner Jury, "Essex and McKitrick make an opaque subject comprehensible to the general public." The book exposes society's precarious relationship with science, and proposes that the breakdown in this relationship is at the heart of the policy crisis around climate change. It is, in fact, a vital first step toward dealing with environmental issues in a way that seeks real solutions.

WHO GETS IN: What's Wrong with Canada's Immigration Program - and How to Fix It is a timely and important exploration of Canada's immigration policy - a subject that has long been at the centre of controversy. Stoffman supports responsible immigration and a compassionate refugee program, but maintains that we have neither. Described by the Donner Jury as "tightly argued, well-researched, opinionated and combative," Stoffman's "tour de force" debunks a host of myths upon which Canada's immigration policy is based.

The winner and two runners-up were chosen from over 75 submissions and a shortlist of seven, by a five-member jury: Grant Reuber (Chairman), Senior Advisor and Director, Sussex Circle; Paul Boothe, Professor and Director of the Institute for Public Economics at the University of Alberta; Claude E. Forget, Consultant and former Minister of Health for the Quebec government; Elizabeth Parr-Johnston, Consultant and former President of the University of New Brunswick; and John Richards, Professor at the Faculty of Business at Simon Fraser University.

Last year's winner of the $25,000 Donner Prize was Marie Mc Andrew for her thought-provoking book IMMIGRATION ET DIVERSITÉ À L'ÉCOLE: le débat québécois dans une perspective comparative published by Les Presses de l'Université de Montréal. The two runner-up books, which were awarded $10,000 each, were MOST FAVORED NATION: Building a Framework for Smart Economic Policy by Jack M. Mintz (C.D. Howe Institute) and ON KIDDIE PORN: Sexual Representation, Free Speech and the Robin Sharpe Case by Stan Persky and John Dixon (New Star Books).