skip to content

Prof. Dr. Frauke Kraas


Prof. Dr. Frauke Kraas

Südbau, Room 2.21

Otto-Fischer-Straße 4
50674 Cologne

Telephone +49-(0)221-470-7050
E-mail f.kraas(at)



Academic career


  • Geography, Biology, Human Anthropology und Philosophy at the universities of Bochum and Muenster, 1981-1987


  • 1991, University of Münster: "Die Rätoromanen Graubündens. Peripherisierung einer Minorität" (The Romansh in Grisons/Switzerland. Peripheralisation of a minority) (summa cum laude)


  • 1996, University of Bonn: "Entwicklungsdynamik und Regierbarkeit des Großraums Bangkok. Zur Bedeutung soziokultureller Einflußgrößen in der Megastadt" (Development dynamics and governance of Greater Bangkok. On the importance of socio-cultural factors in the megacity)


  • Winter semester 2020/2021: Albertus Magnus Teaching Award of the University of Cologne

  • 2012-2014: Visiting Professor (resident), Department of Geography, University of Yangon/Myanmar
  • since 2000: Professor and Chair of Human Geography (C4), Department of Geography at the Unitversity of Cologne
  • 1999-2000: Heisenberg scholarship holder of the German Research Foundation, Department of Geography, University of Bonn
  • 1997: Awarded with the Gerhard-Hess-Preis of  the German Research Foundation
  • 1989-1999: Scientific assistant at the Department of Geography, University of Bonn
  • 1988-1989: Scientific assistant at the Department of Geography, University of Muenster

Research focus

  • Megacity and urbanization studies: development dynamics, risks, health, cultural heritage, governance, informality, resource security
  • Social geography: migration, ethnic minorities, socio-economic disparities
  • Development, transition and regional studies
  • Southeast Asia (Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia), India, Iceland, Switzerland, China

Leadership in professional societies, board membership and honorary appointment

Current tasks

  • Member of the Senate of the Leibniz Association 

  • Member of the Scientific Board of the South Asia Institute, University of Heidelberg

  • International Advisor for the University of Yangon, Myanmar

  • Adjunct Faculty of Bharati Vidyapeeth University, Pune/India

  • President of the German-Thai-Society, publisher of the "Thailand-Rundschau"

  • Chairperson of the Frithjof Voss Foundation of Geography

  • Spokesperson of the "Scientifc Research Group on Southeast Asia", German Geographical Society (DGfG)

  • Editor of the publication series "Megastädte und Globaler Wandel; Megacities and Global Change"(Franz Steiner Verlag), "Urban and Regional Development in Myanmar" (Franz Steiner Verlag) and "Southeast Asian Modernities" (LitVerlag)

Memberships in academies

  • Member of the Academia Europaea (since 2004)
  • Member of the German Academy of Sciences Lepoldina (since 2009)
  • Corresponding Member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna (since 2007)
  • Corresponding Member of the Geographical Society of Finland (since 2001)

Past tasks

  • 2019-2020: Member of the European Research Council (ERC) evaluation panel SH2 "Institutes, Values, Environment and Space: Political science, law, sustainability science, geography, regional studies and planning (AdG 2019/2020)
  • Member of the Senate Committee and member of the Grants Committee on Collaborative Research Centres (SFB) of the German Research Foundation (DFG)
  • 2015-2016: Appointed Member of the United Nations Policy Unit 1 "Right to the City and Cities for All", Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III)
  • 2013-2016: Member of the German Advisory Council on Global Change (WBGU)
  • 2016-2022: Member of the International Expert Comission of the Elite Network of Bavaria
  • 2012-2016: Chair of the MegaCity Commission, International Geographical Union (IGU)
  • 2007-2015: Member of the scientific advisory board of the University of Cologne
  • 2008-2010: Expert in the German Council of Science and Humanities: Working group on infrastructure in social science and humanities.
  • 2005-2015: Spokesperson of the federal jury in the field of geosciences at the competition "Jugend forscht" (Youth researches)
  • 2005-2013: Member of the selection committee "Internationale Alumni- und Expertennetzwerke" of the "German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
  • 2005-2013: Member of the German National Committee for Global Change-Research (NKGCF) (DFG/BMBF)
  • 2005-2011: Member of the DFG-senate commission for collaborative geoscience research  ("Geokommission")
  • 2005-2010: Member of the Executive Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) of the International Human Dimensions Programme (IHDP) core project "Urbanization and Global Environmental Change" (UGEC)
  • 2004-2016: Vice president of the GeoUnion - Alfred Wegener Stiftung
  • 2004-2016: Member and and since 2014 speaker of the review board  "Geography" (RB 317) of the German Research Foundation (DFG)
  • 2004-2010: Senior Advisor of the International Year of Planet Earth (UNESCO) and Chair/Team Leader of the key topic on "Megacities - our global urban future"
  • 2003-2008: Member of the scientific advisory board of the German Committee for Desaster Reduction (DKKV)
  • 2002-2010: Member of the selection committee "Deutsche Graduierte nach Übersee" of the "German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)
  • 2002-2010: Member of the international advisory board of  the Geographical Journal
  • 2001-2007: Board member of the Gernan Association for Asian Studies (DGA)
  • 2001-2004: Member of the regional advisory board of the German National Committee for the International Geographical Union (IGU)
  • 2000-2012: Chair of the MegaCity TaskForce, International Geographical Union (IGU)
  • 1999-2006: Associate editor of the "Teubner Studienbücher Geographie", later changed to the series "Perthes Geographiekolleg", "Perthes Geographie Kompakt" und "Perthes Länderprofile/Regionalprofile"
  • 1999-2005: Associate editor of Petermanns Geographische Mitteilungen
  • 1999-2002: Member of the advisory board of the German-Cambodian-Forum
  • 1999-2001: Member of the scientific advisory board of the German Association for Asian Studies
  • 1998-2000: First chairperson of the Geographic Society Bonn
  • 1997-2009: Vice president of the German-Thai-Society (DTG)
  • 1991-1997: Board member and member of the advisory council of the German-Thai-Society (DTG)
  • 1991-1999: Board member of the Association of Geographers at German Universities (VGDH)
  • 1989-2023: Co-head of the federal office of the Association of Geographers at German Universities, GEO-Office, Cologne
  • 1989-1991: Board member of the Association of German University Geographers (VDGH)