Watching the Box

We who teach (and research) about international business are a bit obsessed with the important role of shipping containers in facilitating more efficient movement of goods across borders (in fact, I’ve blogged about this before). The introduction of the standardised shipping container is seen as an important driver of globalisation. To fuel this fascination further, the BBC are running a neat project offering us all a personal insight into the life of just such a container!

Route of the Container as at Nov 20, 2008

They have put a GPS inside a shipping container and are reporting on what cargo moves in and out of the box, and where the box itself goes over the coming year.

So far it has carried whisky from Scotland to China, and it is now filled with tape measures and other consumer goods headed for the US. You can track its movements here and read stories related to its cargo here (including loads of videos).

Over the coming months we should get enormous insights into the machinations of the global economy, including production processes, logistics, trade patterns and also the impact that the current economic dramas are having on the people at the coalface of international commerce.

I’m excited!

Thanks to the folks at Global Edge for bringing this to my attention.


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