Most countries including the U.S. view increasing international trade, particularly export trade, as essential for economic growth. According to a McKinsey & Company study, an estimated 80 percent of produced goods will cross international borders by 2020. While there has been extensive research focused on the impacts of regulations on trade, there has been very little research focused on innovation and technology specific to improving existing trade or creating new trade. Moreover, there exists a huge gap between developing a product and developing a profitable supply chain to support the distribution of that product.
The Trade, Innovation & Productivity (TIP) Center in Costa Rica is one addition to Georgia Tech's network of centers for facilitating trade across international borders. It joins the Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute (SCL) in Atlanta and its other centers in Panama, Mexico, Singapore and China. The centers are funded by a combination of industry and government in the countries where the centers are located. This network of centers, known as the TIP Network, addresses both the need and opportunity for comprehensive programs to address logistics.