Geographers’ knowledge and skills may be based in the physical, environmental or social sciences or in the humanities, and across many areas of work: in education, teaching and training, in research, in the commercial world, including consultancy, in the public sector, charitable organisations, the planning professions and in resource management. Whatever sector you are or would like to work in, the competencies provide you with a structure for identifying your expertise and planning your future development.
The Framework of Competencies forms the basis for accreditation as a Chartered Geographer. The four competency themes will help you to understand the skills, knowledge and expertise you will demonstrate across your career, and you can use it to identify areas that you need to develop for future success.
The four competency themes are:
Within each of these themes are a set of competency statements which articulate the skills, knowledge, behaviours and other characteristics of successful professional geographers.
Explore the Framework of Competencies
Using the Framework to structure development
The Framework document (at the link above) contains a set of articulations for each competency statement. When you are first starting your career, you can expect to only fulfil some competencies, or be stronger in one theme than another. This is normal, and provides you with a basis for further development.
As you progress, expect to fulfil more of the articulations in each competency. You might also fulfil competencies that your employer sets, which complement the Framework. When applying for Chartered Geographer, we expect to see a depth of evidence across the breadth of the four themes and competencies of the Framework, but not necessarily for every competency statement, and certainly not every articulation.
Over the course of your career, certain themes and competencies will become more important, while others will become less important. This can change according to the type of role, sector or organisation you are in. Use the Framework in a flexible way, to support you as your expertise grows and changes.
To engage in effective career development, you might use the Framework in these ways:
As a tool for a gap analysis: Where are your strengths and weaknesses? Where do you have gaps, can the articulations suggest practical ways for you to further build skills and experience?
As a guide to goal-setting: Where you need to improve, set SMART goals to achieve this. Goal-setting is a good time to draw upon mentor support to identify and support routes for improvement.
To support a balanced approach: when you are considering professional development opportunities, try to find activities across the breadth of the Framework.