Esteban R. Brenes | INCAE Master Programs


Esteban Brenes, from Costa Rica, specializes in strategy and entrepreneurship. He has lectured at the business schools of universities like Michigan, Chicago and Duke. He’s a visiting professor at Cotrugli Business School in Croatia. He has taught in tailor-made programs for Carlsberg, Coca Cola, Oracle, CEMEX, Citibank, Chiquita, among others.

He has published several articles, case studies, and books, including The Future of Entrepreneurship in Latin America” with J. Haar and Understanding Entrepreneurial Family Businesses in Uncertain Environments: Opportunities and Resources in Latin America” with M. Nordqvist et al., both published in 2012. In Spanish, he wrote Desafíos Presentes y Futuros del Medio Ambiente y la Productividad en la Agro Empresa Centroamericana y Evaluación de Proyectos en Impacto Ambiental.

As a consultant, he has worked on strategy, mergers and acquisitions and family business for organizations like Kraft CA, Holcim CR, Tetrapak CA&C, Autoridad del Canal de Panamá, Grupo Britt NV, Grupo Monge, Hospital Clínica Bíblica, Televisora de Costa Rica S.A., Distribuidora Pedro Oller, Grupo De Sola, to mention a few.


Personal Information

Full Professor
Country of Origin:
Costa Rica
Country of Residence:
Costa Rica
Office Phone:
+506 2437-2377
P.O. Box: 
Campus Walter Kissling Gam Apartado 960-4050 Alajuela, Costa Rica

Academic Degrees

  • MBA - INCAE Business School
  • Ingeniería - ngineering degree, University of Costa Rica
  • Ph.D. - Agricultural Economics and International Trade and Marketing from the University of Florida (Gainesville)

Teaching areas

  • Strategy


  • Estrategia Empresarial
  • Corporate Strategy


Work Experience

Currently Dr. Brenes is Full Professor of Strategy and Entrepreneurship and was Dean of INCAE Business School from 2002 to 2007.

During the last 10 years he has served as visiting professor of Strategy and International Business at the University of Michigan Business School and also visiting professor of Cotrugli Business Academy in Croatia.

Professor Brenes has lectured in the in-campus and executive programs of the University of Chicago, Duke University and University of Michigan Business Schools.

Recently, he has been committee member and chairman of a PhD dissertation in Le Groupe HEC in Paris.

In addition to his academic work, Dr. Brenes is a consultant in business strategy, mergers and acquisitions, new venture development, family business management and food policy.

Some of the companies and organizations for which he has consulted include Chiquita International, Lee Textiles for Central America, Cotton Council USA, Central Bank of Costa Rica, Bank of Costa Rica, Bancomer of Panama, Salvadorian Bank, Cement of Panama, Guayaquil Stock Exchange, Princess Hotels and De Sola Group (Central America), Café Britt Coffee Corporation (Costa Rica, Peru, Curacao and Chile) and the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

He also sits in the board of different companies in retail, media, real estate, agribusiness and health.

Between May 1998 and June 2000 he served as Minister of Science and Technology and Minister of Agriculture for the Government of Costa Rica and Chairman of several public firms in the fields of agriculture production, industrialization and marketing, irrigation and dripping and fresh water and seafood products.

He received his doctoral degree of Agricultural Economics and International Trade and Marketing from the University of Florida (Gainesville) and his MBA degree with honors from INCAE Business School. Prior to that, he had received an Industrial Engineering degree from the University of Costa Rica.

Professor Brenes had produced over 50 case studies and teaching papers and had been Coordinator of the Academic Research Center of INCAE for several years.

In addition, he had been a leading researcher in different areas for the Latin American Center for Competitiveness and Sustainable Development (CLACDS).

His most recent publications include a series of articles in academic journals on Strategic Management and Family Business.

Before that he published a series of articles on “Strategic Choices in the New International Enterprise in Latin America and Case Studies: New Global Strategies of International Business in Latin America.

In addition, Professor Brenes published two books in Spanish during the 90s, Desafíos Presentes y Futuros del Medio Ambiente y la Productividad en la Agroempresa Centroamericana y Evaluación de Proyectos e Impacto Ambiental.