Geographical Society of Bonn

Logo of the Geographical Society Bonn

The Geographical Society of Bonn (BGG) (founded in 1910 as the Gesellschaft für Erd- und Völkerkunde) is a registered, non-profit association. The most important goal of the BGG is to present research results of geography and ethnology to a broad public interested in the subject in a problem-oriented and at the same time generally understandable way.

Current Program

Each year, seven to nine lectures are offered by specialist scientists on general and regional geographic as well as ethnological topics. In addition, the society organizes excursions for its members and interested guests and informs about offers of other geographic societies in Germany.

Students are sitting in the lectrure hall
© Friederike Pauk/GIUB

Invitation to the lectures in the summer semester 2024 "Climate change in the high mountains"

The lectures of the series will take place in presence in the Alfred Philippson Lecture Hall of the Department of Geography University of Bonn.

For members of the Geographical Society of Bonn, we also offer digital participation via Zoom this semester. For this we ask for a short message by email, upon which we will send the access data.

The lectures begin at 5:15 p.m.

4/24/2024, 5:15 p.m.

Alpine natural hazards in climate change: trigger mechanisms, models and possibilities of prediction

Prof. Dr. Michael Krautblatter (Technical University of Munich)

Natural hazards already play a significant role for economy and safety in the Alpine region today. Various processes that lead to alpine natural hazards have increased significantly in intensity and frequency in recent decades, particularly due to more frequent heavy precipitation events and changes in high alpine geosystems caused by glacier and permafrost changes. In this lecture, we will examine the changes in glacier and permafrost systems, e.g. using the Zugspitze and Ötztal as examples, and the changes in rockfalls, debris flows and rockslides. Using a four-thousand-year-old debris flow chronology at lake Plansee, we can show that the frequency of debris flows has greatly increased over the last hundred years. We are also trying to model future developments in rock stability with the help of temperature sensitive rock-ice mechanical models. In the AlpSenseRely project, we are developing forecasting techniques to better predict alpine natural hazards. One prominent object here is the Hochvogel, on which we are testing extensive measurement and transmission technology for the Alpine region.

6/19/2024 4:15 p.m.

Up or down? Migrating alpine plants meet unstable mountain slopes

Prof. Dr. Jana Eichel (Utrecht University)

While many mountain slopes are becoming increasingly unstable due to climate change, plant species must migrate upwards on them to survive rising temperatures. Can upward migrating plants stabilize mountain slopes and protect us from natural hazards in the future, or will rockfall, mudslides, avalanches and other processes impede upward migration and thus the diversity of plant species? This depends on the balance between the intensity of slope movements and the ability of plants to survive and stabilize them. Using case studies from the Alps and other high mountain regions, three possible "biogeomorphological" future scenarios for the joint development of slope instabilities and plant distribution and diversity are presented. In addition, the role of altitudinal gradients and high environmental heterogeneity for the variability of these scenarios in time and space is discussed.

7/3/2024 5:15 p.m.

From "residence of snow" to socio-hydrology: changes in the cryosphere and adaptation measures in the Himalayas

Prof. Dr. Marcus Nüsser (University of Heidelberg)

A decline in glaciers and other components of the cryosphere can be observed to varying degrees in all sections of the Himalaya and neighboring high mountain region. Especially in the arid high mountains of South Asia, the (seasonal) water availability is largely determined by meltwater runoff from the cryosphere. After a short to medium-term increase in runoff as a result of glacier retreat and the associated increase in meltwater, a peak (referred to as peak water) is reached before less meltwater becomes available in the long term, due to the decreasing size and volume of the glaciers. Adaptation measures will be necessary, particularly in the area of meltwater-dependent irrigation farming. In addition, over the last few decades, an increase in glacial lake outbursts and resulting destruction of settlements and infrastructure can be observed. This can be attributed to both climate change and the increasing development of endangered areas. Regions in the Himalayas thus appear to be both endangered and dangerous landscapes. In the lecture, these socio-hydrological relationships will be discussed based on regional case studies.


Membership can be obtained from the office of the Geographical Society of Bonn e.V. Here you can also obtain the current program of events.

Annual membership fee

15,00 EURO for full members
  6,50 EURO for student members

Admission at the box office

free admission for all members of the society
free admission for registered school classes and accompanying teachers
  2,00 EURO for students
  3,00 EURO for non-members

School classes can register either by mail ( or by phone (+49 228 73-7516).

Membership Declaration

If you would like to join the Geographical Society of Bonn, please fill out the membership application and send it to the following address:

Geographisches Institut der Universität Bonn
Meckenheimer Allee 166
53115 Bonn

You can download the declaration of accession as a pdf file under the following link:

Declaration of accession BGG (238 KB)

Consent to the privacy policy of the BGG e.V. for the use of member data according to the new EU data protection regulation  (69 KB)

New EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

As of May 25, 2018, the new EU General Data Protection Regulation will come into force.            

Privacy policy of BGG e.V. (104 KB)

Geographical Society of Bonn

Meckenheimer Allee 166

53115 Bonn


Chairwoman: Prof. Dr. Nadine Marquardt
Vice Chair: Arnulf Marquardt-Kuron
Managing Director: Dr. Julia Poerting
Assessor: Dr. Hans Baumgarten, Dr. Marcus Mogk

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