Berlin is geologically not different from the rest of the North German Plain, and the expected underground sights are all of artificial origin. Large parts of Berlin are also built on the loose sediments of the ice ages, ground moraine, terminal moraine or outwash plains. These are often filled with groundwater up to a few meters below the surface, which makes civil engineering an exciting and expensive business. It is not surprising that Berlin speleologists are very successful in their research all over the world, except in Berlin.
And yet Berlin has already given a massive boost to speleology on several occasions. The most important such case was probably Benno Wolf. The Berlin judge and legal adviser did what all Berliners do: he went to the Harz Mountains for leisure activities. There he discovered speleology for himself and pursued this hobby very professionally. He was probably the first serious German speleologist and founded the first German cave register. For years he was the chairman of the Main Association of Austrian and German Speleologists and was the editor of the main association magazine. Today, the Verband der deutschen Höhlen und Karstforscher (German Speleologic Society) awards an annual prize named after him.
Die Berliner Höhlenforscher sind im Speläoclub Berlin (SCB) organisiert. Sie veröffentlichen eine weltbekannte Reihe von Berichten über Höhlenexpeditionen in der ganzen Welt. Sie publizieren Höhlenkataster für Afrika, Meghalaya, Iran und andere Länder. Die zweite große unterirdische Forschungsgruppe sind Berliner Unterwelten e.V.. Sie erkunden die Unterwelten unter der Hauptstadt und bieten Führungen an.