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About the Prize

The Balsillie Prize is awarded annually for a book of nonfiction that advances and influences policy debates on a wide range of social, political, economic, or cultural topics relevant to Canadians. The prize celebrates excellence in quality of thought and style and underlines the important role books play in advancing public discourse and bringing new ideas to Canadian policymakers.

The selected books will combine new insights with impressive research, offering thought-provoking contributions to debates on issues that impact both public consciousness and Canadian policymakers. The prize especially values bold works that bring public policy issues to the general reading public.

Sponsorship of this prize is part of a $3 million commitment to supporting our nation's literature by Canadian businessman and philanthropist Jim Balsillie.

About prize sponsor Jim Balsillie

Jim Balsillie is the former chairman and co-CEO of Research In Motion (BlackBerry), a technology company he scaled from an idea to $20 billion in sales globally. Balsillie was part of the consortium that recently purchased and repatriated the Canadarm maker MDA. His long-standing interest in and support of public policy initiatives in Canada include serving as an advisor to Canada School of Public Service, creating and funding the Centre for International Governance Innovation, the Balsillie School of International Affairs, the Arctic Research Foundation, the Institute for New Economic Thinking, the Centre for Digital Rights, and the CIO Strategy Council. He was the private sector representative on the UN Secretary General’s High Panel for Sustainability. He is member of the Board of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and the Advisory Board of the Stockholm Resilience Centre. His awards include: Mobile World Congress Lifetime Achievement Award, Canadian Business Hall of Fame, Time Magazine’s World’s 100 Most Influential People, and three times Barron’s list of “World’s Top CEOs.” Balsillie is also the sponsor of the Atwood Gibson Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize.