Manitoba Politics and Government

Issues, Institutions, Traditions

Paul Thomas (Editor), Curtis Brown (Editor)


Manitoba has always been a province in the middle, geographically, economically, and culturally. Lacking Quebec’s cultural distinctiveness, Ontario’s traditional economic dominance, or Alberta’s combustible mix of prairie populism and oil wealth, Manitoba appears to blend into the background of the Canadian family portrait. But Manitoba has a distinct political culture, one that has been overlooked in contemporary political studies. Manitoba Politics and Government brings together the work of political scientists, historians, sociologists, economists, public servants, and journalists to present a comprehensive analysis of the province’s political life and its careful “mutual fund model” approach to economic and social policy that mirrors the steady and cautious nature of its citizens. Moving beyond the Legislature, the authors address contemporary social issues like poverty, environmental stewardship, gender equality, health care, and the province’s growing Aboriginal population to reveal the evolution of public policy in the province. They also examine the province’s role at the intergovernmental and international level. Manitoba Politics and Government is a rich and fascinating account of a province that strives for the centre, for the delicate middle ground where individualism and collectivism overlap, and where a multitude of different cultures and traditions create a highly balanced society.


“The book includes contributions that will be of interest to historians and sociologists, as well as readers interested in Aboriginal issues, federalism and regional studies, and, of course, Canadian studies. Finally, the book is accessible to the wider reading public, and Manitobans in particular will want to pick up a copy in order to better understand their own province.”

Royce Koop, Carleton University, American Review of Canadian Studies

About the Authors

Paul Thomas is Professor Emeritus in the Department of Political Studies at the University of Manitoba.

Curtis Brown is a longtime Manitoba political analyst and pollster. He worked as a reporter and editorial page editor with the Brandon Sun and has been a frequent op-ed contributor to the Winnipeg Free Press. He is a former vice-president with Winnipeg’s Probe Research Inc. and currently works in Toronto as a senior research associate with Environics’ Corporate and Public Affairs practice.

Other contributors: Christopher Adams, Paul Barber, Harvey Bostrom, Rodney Clifton, Jim Eldridge, Gerald Friesen, Jean Friesen, Joan Grace, Kerri Holland, Derek Hum, Irene Linklater, Frances Russell, Kelly Saunders, Jim Silver, Wayne Simpson, Paul Thomas, Paul Vogt, Jared Wesley, Nelson Wiseman