The University of Toronto philosophy professor took the prize for his book "Enlightenment 2.0: Restoring Sanity to Our Politics, Our Economy, and Our Lives" (HarperCollins Publishers).
He beat out four other finalists — who receive $2,500 apiece — for the award at the Politics and the Pen gala in Ottawa on Wednesday night.
Jury members Denise Chong, Terry Glavin, and Jane Taber called his book "an important work of serious philosophy that is at the same time lively, lucid, engaging, and entertaining."
Heath's other books include "Filthy Lucre," "The Efficient Society" and "The Rebel Sell," co-written by Andrew Potter.
Now in its 15th year, the Shaughnessy Cohen Prize honours a literary non-fiction book on politics.
The prize is named after the late MP from Windsor, Ont.