Det Kongelige Danske Geografiske Selskab (the Royal Danish Geographical Society) was established November 18th, 1876 with the dual purpose of ‘disseminating knowledge of the Earth and its inhabitants’ and to ‘promote interest in geographical sciences’.
To achieve its aims the society arranges meetings, where lectures on geographical themes can be discussed, publishes a journal, and keeps a library and collection of maps. The society attempts in the first place to inform about Danish geographical research and to form links to other geographical and related societies.
This essence of the society’s founding declaration has consistently been materialized during its first 125 years of existence.
Up to WW I the society had an important role in initiating, supporting, and reporting Arctic research, particularly in relation to Greenland, which was thus kept under Danish aegis. Most of the leading polar researchers were awarded the society’s Gold Medal (Nansen, Nordenskiöld, Scott, Amundsen, Shackleton) and gave lectures in Copenhagen. Exploration was a leading motive of the time, and it still was in the time between the great wars. The arctic expeditions with sledges and dogs culminated with Knud Rasmussen’s 5th Thule-expedition along the entire polar edge of the North American continent to trace Eskimo origins. Expeditions became modernized by utilizing airplanes (Lauge Koch). Danish expeditions in Central Asia (Haslund-Christensen) provided much new information, but domestic geomorphology attracted increasing interest, specifically the dynamics of the wadden-sea coastal landscape.
The post-war society has maintained its interest in arctic research and also in being he main outlet for the results of Danish geographical research. Presently, themes such as coastal and glacial-periglacial morphology, climatic change, satellite-based analyses of agrarian landscapes in Africa, urban development and the forming of the Öresundregion are at the fore, along with a modernization of the geographical discipline.
Presently the society has some 400 members.
Kongelige Danske Geografiske Selskab
Øster Voldgade 10
DK 1350 Copenhagen K
Danish Journal of Geography (Geografisk Tidsskrift)
Contains contributions on the Geography of Denmark and is a main channel for publishing works of Danish geographers. Broad range of themes, especially of an ecological character.
Published twice a year in English.
Folia Geographica Danica
Contains mainly doctoral theses and similar significant works in book-form.