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Commanding Heights: The Battle For The World Economy; Agony of Reform, The

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Commanding Heights: The Battle For The World Economy
Agony of Reform, The
Program Number


Series Description

Filmed over the course of two years on five continents, COMMANDING HEIGHTS: THE BATTLE FOR THE WORLD ECONOMY is the first in-depth documentary that tells the inside story of our new global economy and what it means for individuals around the world. Narrated by David Ogden Stiers, explores the new reality, new rules, and new winners and losers in the battle between government and the marketplace; the great debate over globalization; and the powerful force shaping our future society and economy. Based on the best-selling book The Commanding Heights: The Battle for the World Economy, co-authored by Pulitzer Prize-winner Daniel Yergin and Joseph Stanislaw.

The series is built around extraordinary interviews with world leaders and thinkers from twenty different countries—including former President Bill Clinton, Vice President Dick Cheney, former USSR President Mikhail Gorbachev, Mexican President Vicente Fox, Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, Singapore’s Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew, former Secretary of the Treasury Robert Rubin, and President George W. Bush’s Economic Advisor Lawrence Lindsey. Series release date: 4/2002

Program Description

The second episode investigates the failure of government-controlled economies in the 1980s and how new leaders embraced the idea of “shock therapy” — a rapid conversion to free-market capitalism. The program focuses on how reform played out in Russia, the eastern bloc, Latin America and other countries as they lived through the upheavals of rapid change — coping with both the new freedoms and the new dangers of privatization, deregulation and the shock of free-wheeling competition.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

Media Type


Global Affairs
Sullivan, Michael (Series Producer)
Chicago: “Commanding Heights: The Battle For The World Economy; Agony of Reform, The,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed December 17, 2018, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_2C66F450D79948978A1B46B9A90333E6.
MLA: “Commanding Heights: The Battle For The World Economy; Agony of Reform, The.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. December 17, 2018. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_2C66F450D79948978A1B46B9A90333E6>.
APA: Commanding Heights: The Battle For The World Economy; Agony of Reform, The. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_2C66F450D79948978A1B46B9A90333E6
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