The frequency of atopic dermatitis (AD) is unknown among children in Greenland. To determine the incidence of AD and to identify risk factors for onset of AD within the first 2 y of life among Greenlandic children an open cohort of 143 children aged 0-2 y in Sisimiut, West Greenland, was followed for a median of 335 d. The children were visited on a weekly basis, where clinical examinations revealed any cases of AD. In total, 24 of the 143 children developed AD. The incidence rate of AD was 177 cases per 1000 child years at risk, corresponding to a cumulative risk of 16% per year. Maternal history of AD [hazard ratio (HR) 2.6, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.03-6.57], high social class of the family (HR 6.18, CI 2.19-17.41) and living in a detached house compared with living in a terraced house or an apartment (HR 2.81, CI 1.16-6.28) were associated with increased risks of AD. In a multivariate model these risk factors all remained significant. Conclusion: The findings confirm that AD represents a health problem among Greenlandic infants and that the pattern of predictive risk factors associated with the development of AD is comparable to that found in northern European countries.