Geography has been taught at Ostrava for over 50 years. In the beginning there was one Department of Geography, comprising both physical and human geography, but in the 1990s the Department split into two sections - physical and human geography. Since the late 1990s human geography has been accompanied by regional development and the Department has begun to focus deeply on political geography. Today, the Department of Human Geography is located in its own building only 10 minutes from the city centre. There are currently 19 full-time members of staff with a wide range of teaching and research interests and more than 15 part-time members of staff who principally support teaching of foreign languages at the Department.
The Department of Human Geography and Regional Development runs three study programmes at Bachelor level – Geography and Regional Development, Political and Cultural Geography and Pedagogy, and Teaching of Geography for elementary and secondary schools - and three study programmes at Master’s level – Geography and Regional Development, Political and Cultural Geography, and Pedagogy and Teaching of Geography for elementary and secondary schools. In sum, the lecturers of the Department teach courses for more than 400 students. The Department also offers the doctoral programme Political and Cultural Geography, and the doctoral programme Environmental Geography is also run in close cooperation with the Department of Physical Geography and Geoecology.
The Department of Human Geography and Regional Development has two branches of scientific and research interest. The first is specialized in regional development and complex city marketing, which is conceived as a multilateral approach to the topic. Its base is in selected branches of human geography – especially urban geography, regional development, public administration, city marketing, geography of tourism, cross-border cooperation, geography of retailing, geography of transportation, rural geography and GIS with focus on socio-economic aspects. This research is institutionally supported by the Centre of City and Regional Management.
The political and cultural geography branch of research specializes in international relations, political and economic geography, geopolitics, sociology of ethnicity and nationalism, ethnic minorities, cultural geography and regional studies with a focus on cultural and political aspects. The scientists work in close conjunction with the Centre of Political and Cultural Geography.
In the field of scientific research, the Department has following projects: