Latin American Logistics and Supply Chain Management: Perspective from the Research Literature

  • James H. BookbinderEmail author
  • Paul Mant
Part of the International Series in Operations Research & Management Science book series (ISOR, volume 181)


This article aims to classify and critique the research and applications that have been conducted concerning supply chain management and logistics in Latin America. We assess the countries in Central and South America according to their capabilities in transportation infrastructure and various demographic and economic characteristics. A third objective is to identify additional research opportunities.

Use of a variety of scientific databases covering major journals in logistics, supply chain management, transportation, and the management sciences led to an original list of 250 references. That was reduced to about 90, the great majority from 1997 onward. These were appraised and categorized along multiple dimensions.

While the countries in Latin America are quite diverse, and a number of impediments to logistics exist, various regional trading blocs are facilitating progress in supply chains there. Five “lessons for business decisions” are emphasized which will aid companies that operate within, or may become part of, a Latin American supply chain. Moreover, summaries of the pertinent facts and country characteristics on infrastructure, trade, etc. enable us to identify top-performing nations as possible points of strategic entry, for a global firm wishing to conduct operations in Central America or in South America. Finally, several Propositions on Latin American logistics are formulated and proposed for future empirical testing.


Distribution Facilities Production Routes Free trade Transportation Central America South America Clusters FTZ 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Management SciencesUniversity of WaterlooWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.Canadian Pacific Railway (Domestic Intermodal)MississaugaCanada

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