History, function and organization

Geological Survey of Montenegro was established on 31st of August, 1945 and that is the most important event in the history of geological research in Montenegro.This date marks the beginning of an organized and systematic exploration of the development, composition and structure of the Earth’s crust on the territory of Montenegro, investigations in order to determine the mineral reserves, hydrogeological and engineering-geological research and exploration.


First notion of searching for ores in Montenegro, therefore of geological research, dated in 1779, when the official Montenegrin representatives asked of Austrian Emperor to send in Montenegro experts for research and exploitation of ores. From that point, it took 166 years to establish the first professional geological institution in Montenegro.

Geological research of Montenegrin terrain continued after the First World War, and especially between 1931 and 1941, when the first Montenegrin geologists took part in it. The most important event in that period was the research of Zarija Besic, who published results of his first researches regarding the geological structure and tectonics of Sinjajevina, Mljeticak, Lola, Javorje and Bijela, in Belgrade in 1933. During the Second World War, geological research was performed in smaller extent.

Events that have special importance for the development of geology in Montenegro: founding of Montenegrin Geological society (1953), which was at first composed of geologists from the Geological Survey of Montenegro, publishing of the first special edition in the field of geology in Montenegro ”Geology of Northwest Montenegro” (Cetinje, 1953), by academician, geologist, Zarija Besic, publishing of the first permanent publication in the field of geology in Montenegro ”Geological bulletin”, Volume I, (Cetinje, 1956), edited by Zarija Bešić and Danilo Jojic, etc.

First headquarters of the Geological Survey of Montenegro were in Cetinje, which was at a time the administrative and political capital of Montenegro.  Due to its inadequate working and development conditions, the Geological Survey of Montenegro was transferred to Prcanj in 1949 and then in Niksic. At last, in 1950, the Geological Survey of Montenegro was transferred to Podgorica, which is its present location.

After it was the established on 31. August 1945 until today, Geological Survey of Montenegro changed several times its status and internal organization, due to numerous social, economical, political and legal reforms. At first, the Geological Survey of Montenegro was bureau of national interest, and it was under the jurisdiction of Ministry of Mining of Federal Peoples Republic of Yugoslavia and Federal Bureau of geological research. Afterwards it fell under the jurisdiction of the Government of Montenegro with status of scientific organization, and having specialized organizational units within it. Further transitional process included: autonomous organization of the Geological Survey of Montenegro, introduction of forced administration, forming of public company and, in the end, changing it into the state institution.

Initially, the Institute had two geologists, and today the Institute has 52 employees: 20 geologists different specialties, one chemical engineer, six geological and chemical technicians, two legal advisors, two economists, 5 drilling technicians and 16 employees from other professions.


The function of the Geological Survey is to implement geological research programs and projects of interest for Montenegro, issued by the Ministry of Economy and funded from the Budget of Montenegro, as well as to acquire part of its revenue on the market through the development and implementation of projects in various fields of applied geology.

Geological Survey is organized in four departments whose activities include performance of geological research in the area of fundamental and applied research. Departments are as follows: Department of regional geology, mineral resources and mineral resources concessions, Department of engineering geology, hydrogeology, geotechnics and water concessions, Department of mining works and research drilling and Department of legal, financial and human resources affairs.

Programs of geological research at the state level are an integral part of the Geological Institute program and include macro and multi-year character studies, mainly related to geological research and testing of larger areas, regions or the entire territory of Montenegro. The second part of the work program of the Institute consists of geological surveys that are geared towards addressing current needs and problems in the economy, which financed interested investors. Projects, studies and topics of interest to the State are in the following areas: basic geological research (general and thematic), basic and detailed geological research of mineral resources outside the mining fields, creation of complex geological background and studies for the granting of concessions for exploration and exploitation of mineral resources and groundwater, geo-ecological research, publishing, development projects and international cooperation.

Activities on geological research for economic subjects include projects and studies funded by investors interested in the following areas: geological exploration of mineral resources and groundwater, engineering-geological and geotechnical investigations for construction of facilities, geotechnical drilling for water supply and other economic needs, expertise and revisions, etc.