2014 Donald Smiley Prize

May 31, 2014 | Donald Smiley Prize

Winner: G. Bruce Doern, Allan M. Maslove and Michal J. Prince

Canadian Public Budgeting in the Age of Crises. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2013.

Excerpt from jury report: Doern, Maslove and Prince’s book deals with a topic of broad and current interest. Doern and colleagues begin their book with an argument that scholars of Canadian public policy need (a) a deeper understanding of budgetary domains, (b) a better way of defining and thinking about fiscal crisis, and (c) an increasing focus on the temporal dimension of budgetary decision-making. The book provides all this, by first reviewing thirty years of fiscal climate, macroeconomic policy and budgetary institutions; and then in detailed reviews of different policy domains. What is most striking about this book is the magnitude of the endeavor – the book manages to combine a rich theoretical background with a very thorough account of recent budgetary trends. It also places budget crises in comparative context, and examines the Canadian-specific elements that have made them better or worse. This is a meticulous but also far-reaching analysis of Canadian budgetary policy.