2021 Jack P. Blaney Award for Dialogue to recognize dialogue furthering anti-racism

December 22, 2020

Nominations are now open for the Jack P. Blaney Award for Dialogue. This award, presented every second year by the Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue, seeks individuals who demonstrate excellence in using dialogue to increase mutual understanding and advance complex public issues.

This year’s nomination includes new criteria to encourage nominations of individuals or teams committed to systems-change that advances anti-racism through dialogue.

“For close to two decades, the Jack P. Blaney Award for Dialogue has recognized individuals who have made significant contributions through dialogue and engagement,” says SFU President Joy Johnson. “The award acknowledges the vital role of dialogue in addressing complex public issues, a value that Simon Fraser University strives to promote in its classrooms and communities.”

Since 2002, this award has recognized individuals across the globe for furthering dialogue around climate solutions, peace and pluralism, human rights, reconciliation and more.

The Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue is committed to the continued learning that this moment in history demands of us. In reviewing nominations, the selection committee will use an intersectional lens to consider the layered social context through which nominations are submitted and positioned. As part of our commitment to learning and growth, the Blaney award seeks to:

  • Honour the recipients and their excellence in the use of dialogue
  • Provide platforms to support and further the recipient’s work
  • Communicate the role of dialogue in creating systemic change
  • Serve communities by leaving legacies of relationships, networks and opportunities

More than a prize, the Blaney award is an opportunity to invite someone doing incredible work to come to the university and spend time in dialogue with us. All programming associated with the award is structured to create reciprocity in relationships with the recipient(s) and participating communities.

Past Blaney Award programs have engaged thousands of participants through hosting international announcements, book launches, capacity-building workshops, participatory research and more.

In February 2020, Siila Watt-Cloutier received the Blaney Award for her international leadership in the use of dialogue in her work as an advocate for Indigenous, environmental, and cultural rights. Siila Watt-Cloutier is a respected Inuit leader and one of the world’s most recognized environment, climate change and human rights advocates. In 2007, Watt-Cloutier was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize for her advocacy showing the impact global climate change has on human rights—specifically in the Arctic.

In six events engaging SFU students, faculty, staff and community leaders, Siila reminded us of the importance of the heart-centred dialogue that enables personal reflection on complex social issues.

Nominations are open until Friday, Feb. 5, 2021. For more information, including submission guidelines visit the Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue website