Evaluating Prime Ministerial Leadership in Canada: The Results of an Expert Survey

Stephen Azzi, Norman Hillmer


This article reports the results of the largest survey of expert opinion on prime ministerial leadership in Canada, conducted in 2011. The top-rated prime ministers were, in order, Laurier, King, Macdonald and Pearson, who were preferred because of their creative records of achievement and capacity to see the country whole, champion its unity and make for positive change. Survey respondents valued transformational leadership that altered the country, but did so in a cautious way that did not threaten national cohesiveness. The article makes frequent reference to the international literature on leadership, allowing for comparisons across a range of countries.


Canada; prime ministers; leadership

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@Canadian Political Science Review (CPSR). ISSN 1911-4125