Innokentii Petrovich Gerasimov

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Gerasimov, Innokentii Petrovich


Born Dec. 9 (22), 1905, in Kostroma. Soviet geographer, geomorphologist, and soil scientist. Became an academician of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR in 1953 (corresponding member since 1946). Joined the CPSU in 1945.

Gerasimov graduated from Leningrad University in 1926. From 1936 to 1956 he headed the department of soil geography and cartography of the V. V. Dokuchaev Soil Institute. In 1945 he began working in the Institute of Geography of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR and became director in 1951. He took part in expeditions to Kazakhstan, Middle Asia, Western Siberia, the Urals, the Far East, and elsewhere. He traveled through Western Europe, India, China, Japan, Ceylon, Senegal, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Guinea, Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, the USA, Mexico, New Zealand, and Australia. He was the leader of many Soviet scientific delegations at international geographic, soil, and other conferences.

Gerasimov’s basic work has been on the origins and geography of soils, physical geography, and paleography and geomorphology. He was the author (jointly with K. K. Markov) of the first Soviet summary of the glacial period in the territory of the USSR (1939). He worked on questions of the classification and development of the relief of the earth, taking into account the latest movements of the earth’s crust. He was also concerned with questions of the protection and transformation of nature and the comprehensive use of natural resources. He developed the constructive school in geography, using the latest research methods.

Gerasimov was the head of the editorial board of the Physical-Geographic World Atlas (1964). He became chairman of the National Committee of Soviet Geographers in 1957 and president of the All-Union Society of Soil Scientists in 1963, vice-president of the International Geography Union from 1960 to 1968 and vice-president of the International Society of Soil Science in 1968. He is a member of the Academy of Sciences of Bulgaria (since 1962), of the German Academy of Sciences in Berlin (1968), of the Academy of Agricultural Sciences of the German Democratic Republic (1968), and of the Leopoldine Academy of the German Democratic Republie (1965). He received the Dmitrov Prize (Bulgaria, 1963) for his soil research in Bulgaria. He has been awarded the Order of Lenin, three other orders, and various medals.


Osnovnye cherty razvitiia sovremennoi poverkhnosti Turana. Moscow-Leningrad, 1937.
Lednikovyi period na territorii SSSR. Moscow-Leningrad, 1939. (Jointly with K. K. Markov.)
Strukturnye cherty rel’efa zemnoi poverkhnosti na territorii SSSR i ikh proiskhozhdenie. Moscow, 1959.
Ocherki po fizicheskoi geogrqfii zarubezhnykh stran. Moscow, 1959.
Osnovy pochvovedeniia i geografiia pochv. Moscow, 1960. (Jointly with M. A. Glazovskaia.)
Pochvy Tsentral’noi Evropy i sviazannye c nimi voprosy fizicheskoi geografii. Moscow, 1960.
Preobrazovanie prirody i razvitie geograficheskoi nauki v SSSR. Moscow, 1967.


Marinich, A. M. (et al). “Shestidesiatiletie so dnia rozhdeniia i sorokaletie nauchnoi deiatel’nosti akademika I. P. Gerasimova.” Izvestiia AN SSSR: Seriia geograficheskaia, 1965, issue 4, no. 6.
Meshcheriakov, Iu. A. “Vklad akademika I. P. Gerasimova v geomorfologiiu.” In Strukturnaia i klimaticheskaia geomorfologiia. Moscow, 1966.
Fridland, V. M. “Issledovaniia I. P. Gerasimova v oblasti pochvovedeniia.” In Genezis i geografiia pochv. Moscow, 1966.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.