Out of the Gobi: Weijian Shan on the Cultural Revolution, economic reform, and U.S.-China ties


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How does a bookish Beijing teenager, who found himself stuck for six years planting potatoes in the Gobi Desert, grow up to study with former chair of the Federal Reserve Janet Yellen, teach at Wharton, and now lead one of Asia’s most successful investment firms? In this episode, Shàn Wěijiàn 单伟建, the chairman and CEO of investment firm PAG Group, and the author of Out of the Gobi: My Story of China and America, tells his personal story of exile during the Cultural Revolution and provides his view on China’s economic transformation.

7:53: Looking back at the Cultural Revolution

23:53: The government’s role in China’s economic development

25:22: Challenges that state-run companies face

42:11: What to make of the protests in Hong Kong

This podcast was edited and produced by Jason MacRonald.