Jul 25, 2011


"Quadriga" is a German prize awarded since 2003. Each year, it is awarded to four leading personalities (or projects) "for their commitment to innovation, renewal, and a pioneering spirit through political, economic, and cultural activities." (source: Wikipedia). The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin has a four-horsed chariot on top of it - such chariots are called quadrigas.

Past winners include the likes of Tim Berners-Lee, Hamid Karzai, the magazine Der Spiegel, and even Wikipedia. Three of this year's awardees were Salam Fayyad (the Palestinian PM), Betul Durmaz (a German author), and Patricia Espinosa (Mexico’s secretary of foreign affairs). The fourth name plunged the whole thing into controversy. Former winners Vaclav Havel and Jimmy Wales threatened to return their award. Some board members of the non-profit that gives the prized protested and resigned. Eventually, the award for 2011 has been cancelled.

Who is this controversial figure, who is currently serving as the Prime Minister of a European country?

Image: Wikipedia

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