Exploring Greenland’s Diverse Job Market: What Do People Actually Do for a Living?

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Exploring the Lives of the People of Greenland

Greenland, the world’s largest island, situated between the Arctic and the Atlantic oceans, is widely known for its natural beauty and extreme weather conditions. However, what really drives the curiosity of travelers is the way of life of the people living there. What do people in Greenland do for a living? This is one of the most frequently asked questions that visitors ask before setting foot on this icy land.

The Hunting and Fishing Industry

The hunting and fishing industry is the backbone of Greenland’s economy. Hunting and fishing for the local catch, such as Arctic char, cod, and halibut, along with seals, whales, and other marine mammals, make up a large part of the locals’ diet. These are also important sources of income for many families, especially in the remote villages where subsistence hunting is still prevalent.

Tradesmen sell their hunted/made products in the local markets. Meat and fish are the primary products processed, packaged, and sold in the markets or fishing factories. Seafood processing, including canning or smoking fish products, is another growing industry that provides important income for local people.

The Growing Tourism Industry

Tourism is another industry on the upswing in Greenland. Over the last decade, the tourism industry has grown by leaps and bounds, and it has become an important source of employment and entrepreneurial opportunities for the locals. The stunning natural beauty of the Arctic landscape, combined with the rich cultural heritage of the indigenous people, lure tourists from all over the world. The industry provides jobs in a range of areas such as hotels, restaurants, tour guide agencies, and souvenir shops.

The Artisans and Handicrafters

Greenlandic handicrafts are renowned worldwide for their intricate designs and delicate workmanship. These traditional arts and crafts are an important source of income for the locals and have been passed down from generation to generation. Observing these exquisite pieces being crafted is a tourist attraction in itself. Many artisans work within their homes, shops and community centers, where visitors can purchase the handcrafted products and engage with the artists.

The Government Jobs

The Greenland Government employs a significant portion of the population, especially in construction, administration and the public sector. Greenland has a high standard of living and vast natural resources – minerals and hydrocarbons – that are still untapped and offer a lot of potential for growth. The recently discovered reserves in Greenland’s offshore waters may see the increase of government jobs in the future.


While Greenland may be a difficult place to live, the people have adapted to the environment and have created a unique way of life for themselves. Hunting, fishing, tourism, handicraft, and government jobs make up the majority of the employment opportunities available, helping the locals maintain their standard of living. Visiting Greenland provides a glimpse into the lives of the hardy people that call it home.

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