Instituto Centroamericano de Administracion de Empresas is one of the leading business schools in Central America, founded as a public institution in 1963 with campuses in Costa Rica and Managua.
It was created following President John F Kennedy’s visit that year to Costa Rica and his meeting with national presidents from the region. Set up with the initial assistance of professors from the Harvard Business School, and using its case-based teaching methods, it is sometimes referred to as "Harvard South".
It completed Triple Crown accreditation in 2018 and has on occasion played a high-level political role, hosting summits between presidents from the region or, in 2010, planning meetings between the newly-elected President of Costa Rica and members of her administration.
Its Managua campus was created in 1969, and in 1984 it moved into the purpose-built Francisco de Sola campus in Alajuelo, Costa Rica, site of the former Alajuelo Racquets club and named in honour of the Salvadorean business leader who was INCAE’s first dean.
It aims to create "Latin American leaders with a global perspective", and offers joint masters qualifications with a number of international institutions, including public administration with the University of Michigan and advanced management with Yale.
Since 2003 executive MBA programmes have been extended to Guatemala, Panama, Ecuador, Venezuela and Peru.
There is a strong emphasis on developing women leaders, recognised as a serious structural weakness in the region, through the Centre for Collaboration and Women’s Leadership and a research programme on "the social progress of women in Latin America".