The formal constitution of the TCI Network - then known as The Competitiveness Institute - took place during the Institute's First Annual Conference dedicated to "Nuts and Bolts of Cluster Development", held in Barcelona on 3-5 November 1998.
There is a general consensus among cluster practitioners that the best way to promote cluster development is to develop local consulting and facilitating skills: in this sense, the ideal background for cluster enhancement is a combination of economic development, business strategy and organizational change expertise. However, difficulty in finding effective facilitators for cluster development initiatives has been pointed out on numerous occasions, and especially with regard to developing countries.
Since there are few if any education or training programs that cover all the relevant disciplines, expertise in cluster development often must be developed through practice, and this creates a distinct need to concentrate local experiences into one center of excellence open to all practitioners. For this reason, a group of professionals and cluster practitioners of diverse backgrounds and nationalities decided to found The Competitiveness Institute, a non-profit, global network of cluster practitioners dedicated to facilitating the spread and success of cluster-based competitiveness initiatives through networking.
In 2008, The Competitiveness Institute decided to change its name to TCI Network with the aim of better reflecting its nature. Rather than an institute, TCI should be seen as a network of practitioners. It was decided, though, to keep the abbreviation TCI.
Since its foundation in 1998, the TCI Network has been led by dedicated Board members, who have brought enormous insight, experience, knowledge and enthusiasm. Consult the founders and former members of the Board of Directors.