Why is geography so interesting

Geography: what to do with exploration

When it comes to subjects related to geography, the first idea is quickly there: geography. The idea of ‚Äč‚Äčlater professions, on the other hand, bubbles less quickly. Geography for teaching has a clearly defined job description, but when graduates head for the free labor market, they are confronted with the "bridgehead function" of the subject.

The geographers used to be the discoverers of the world. They explored, measured and mapped the surface of the earth, they documented natural phenomena and described coastlines and regions. Nowadays, the "science of the earth's surface" is set up much more complex due to technical progress and academic development of the subject.

The two major sub-areas of modern geography are:

  • physical geography (scientifically oriented)
    This area is about an interdisciplinary understanding of the earth system. What does the landscape look like on the earth's surface and what dynamics does the natural space have? What can be observed about the structure and function of the natural environment and its use by humans. Ideally, the ability to manage sustainable use of the earth's habitat is developed.
    Important subjects in physical geography are: geomorphology (surface forms), soil science, hydrology, climatology, biogeography (flora and fauna) remote sensing (observation by satellites)
  • Human geography (oriented towards social and human sciences)
    Human geography focuses on people - this can be deduced from the name. The central question is what is the relationship between space and people? And how exactly does the spatial organization of human activity look like? Or to put it another way: Human geography captures the spatial aspects of cultures, economy and society. She also examines change and the relationships and differences between individual regions and places.
    In this context, important terms are also anthropogeography, population and social geography and economic geography

And of course geography is a school subject, which is why a large number of geography students see their professional future in teaching.

What budding geographers need to bring with them in order to be successful at work and at university is a question that is not easy to answer. The degree is diverse and so is the job market. A certain scientific and mathematical talent for imagining space is probably the lowest common denominator. In addition, it is important what each individual makes of their studies.

Labor market: no trace of homogeneity

There is also a wide range of job opportunities for geographers outside of school and university. But: A university degree alone is not a guarantee for a successful career start. During your studies it is a good idea to find out about possible career prospects and to sharpen your own profile. Geography as a subject often has a kind of "bridgehead function", that is, the course has no rigidly defined boundaries, but rather overlaps with other subjects in terms of content. Be it architecture, civil engineering, surveying, urban planning, biology or business tourism.

When applying for a job, the graduates must therefore always compete with applicants from other disciplines. Required additional qualifications can be acquired, for example, through internships or even non-university training. The geographers feel almost like the humanities scholars.

Important fields of activity for geographers are:

  • City and regional planning, traffic planning (Land use planning, green space planning and urban development funding)
  • Environmental protection / nature conservation (Landscape maintenance, management of protected areas and extracurricular environmental education, environmental advice, waste management)
  • Business promotion (Economic geography: locating new companies, strengthening existing structures, marketing commercial space or forming economic clusters)
  • Tourism / tourism (Tourist offices, tourist associations, large tour operators)
  • Business consulting / policy advice (Development of new usage concepts)
  • Real estate industry (for example: increasing the value of land through redesign, cleaning the floor of contaminated sites)
  • Geographic information (Examples are green space information systems, tree cadastre, playground cadastre, environmental databases)
  • Development cooperation (Economic development projects in combination with environmental protection issues, drinking water treatment, landscape protection)
  • Publishing (Cartography / geography)

Department of Geography at studieren.de