This guide is designed to facilitate classroom use of The Fabric of Reform, a 30-minute educational video created by the International Monetary Fund. It is intended for use with students in economics and international relations courses at the secondary and postsecondary levels.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF)

The IMF was established in 1944 to help all nations avoid the kinds of destructive economic policies that had contributed to the Great Depression and the outbreak of World War II. Since then it has aspired to increase international prosperity by encouraging countries to adopt policies conducive to their economic growth and financial stability, to open their economies to foreign trade, and to support one another when adjustments are needed. These strategies have stood the test of time, and indeed, those nations that have committed to them have enjoyed a half century of unparalleled prosperity. It is no wonder, then, that nearly all of the world’s countries (182 in 1999) have become IMF members, and have done so voluntarily because they see the advantage of consulting with one another to maintain a stable system of buying and selling currencies.

The IMF’s three main activities are: (1) supervising each member’s exchange rate policies, a practice known as surveillance; (2) providing temporary financing to members with balance of payments problems; and (3) providing technical assistance in the areas of public finance, central banking, exchange rate systems, and statistics. A nonprofit organization, the IMF operates much like a credit union, its main source of funds being membership fees, or quotas. These quotas, which are based on a country’s economic performance and wealth, enable members to request advice and loans.

The Fabric of Reform video was developed by the External Relations Department of the International Monetary Fund.

The Fabric of Reform Study Guide was developed for the International Monetary Fund by Toby Levine Communications, Inc., Bethesda, Maryland.


Frances Anne Hardin

Narrator: Georges A. Collinet

Associate Producer: Rani Vedurumudi

Editor: Tracy Baumgardner

Camera: Bill Johnson

Sound Engineer: Juan Miguel Rodriguez

Graphic Art: Adam Newton

Post Production: Roland House,

Arlington, Virginia

Writer: Stephanie Dailey

Managing Editor: Kelley McDonald

Advisor: Christian Francois, International Monetary Fund, African Department

Cover—top to bottom: Woman gleaning grain in Mali, Malian woman in traditional dress, bottling plant in Cameroon, and farming green beans in Cameroon by Bill Johnson; Background image: Ivoirien Kente cloth by Bill Johnson

© 1999 The IMF Video Project