Occupational profile

  Geoscientists in the field © GuG  

The Earth Sciences cover a very broad spectrum of the natural sciences. Depending on the respective specialization, the points of contact with the natural sciences and engineering can be more or less intensive. Geoscientists are therefore active in very diverse fields. Coupled with a basic understanding of natural sciences and engineering, geoscientists are also attractive to many companies in IT and software development. Career prospects are also available in the development and application of instrumental and chemical analysis. Because of their interdisciplinary nature, many geoscientists are also employed outside their field.

According to the BDG, the working geoscientists are distributed among the individual employment sectors as follows:

  • Industry and business: 25%
  • Freelancers, geo and engineering offices: 25%
  • Offices and authorities: 15%
  • Universities and research institutions: 10%
  • Related and non-specialized employment: 25%

As possible fields of employment for geoscientists, the applied areas clearly dominate. In contrast, those employed in science and teaching make up only a small portion, less than 10% of the workforce.

Depending on the area of employment, the requirements, work environments, and labor market situation differ significantly. While the current job prospects are good in the field of geo and engineering offices or consulting as well as in offices and authorities, the numbers of permanent positions at universities and research institutions remain very low. The general economic situation has an important influence on job prospects in applied fields of activity. In the raw materials industry in particular, the sometimes large fluctuations in world market prices play a decisive role, as can currently be observed in the hydrocarbons sector, for example.

Income depends on the sector and region as well as professional experience, and in the case of public employers also on marital status and employment status (salaried or civil servant). The range of annual gross incomes for career starters is between 35,000 euros in geo offices to 60,000 euros (public administration).

You can find more fields of activity under "Career prospects" in the overview of Bachelor's degree programs.