Pathway to Skills

Denmark - Country Summary

PopulationLiteracy rateGDP per capitaUnemployment rateInflation rateEthnic Groups (%)
(in millions) (%) ($) (%) (%) Scandinavian, Inuit, Faroese, German
5.45 100 37,000 4.5 1.8 Majority


The Danish education system consists of Grundskole (combining primary and lower secondary education), Ungdomsuddannelser (youth education programmes, i.e. upper secondary education) and Videregilde uddannelser (higher education), as well as a system of adult education.

Education is compulsory between the ages seven and sixteen. Compulsory education consists of nine years of primary and lower secondary education, with an optional tenth year. In addition, nearly all children attend a one-year pre-school class.

Danish is the medium of instruction in schools. However, English is a compulsory subject in the Folkeskole (from Class 4) and in general upper secondary school. Most university-level institutions offer various courses and programmes in English.


Denmark is a constitutional monarchy with a 179 member parliament (Folketing) elected by proportional representation, which includes two members elected from the Faroe Islands and two from Greenland. The Parliament has one legislative house.

The Faroe Islands and Greenland have home rule, with the Danish Government responsible for foreign relations, monetary affairs and defence.

Economics / Resources

This modern market economy features high-tech agriculture, up-to-date small-scale and corporate industry, extensive government welfare measures, comfortable living standards, a stable currency, and high dependence on foreign trade. Denmark is a net exporter of food and energy and has a comfortable balance of payments surplus. The government has been successful in meeting, and even exceeding, the economic convergence criteria for participating in the third phase of the European Monetary Union (EMU), but in a referendum in 2000, Denmark reconfirmed its decision not to join the 11 other EU members in the euro. Even so, the Danish currency remains pegged to the euro.