This programme has recently been submitted to the ESF for consideration. Its aim is to facilitate the interaction between the experts in pollen analysis from different European countries and scientists from related research fields such as modern ecology, palaeoecology, vegetation and climate modelling. Representatives of these communities will be invited to take part in workshops in order to compare the palaeoreconstructions from pollen data with other proxies. The programme will start with a workshop (ca 40 participants) aiming to identify the key questions related to the understanding of the global change which can be dealt with using the EPD. Detailed tasks and schedules for each regional and national working group will be assigned. The EPD will constitute the link between the different regional/national working groups. Training courses at the database and exchanges between doctoral and post doctoral students will contribute to complement the data compilation and to reinforce the coherence between the working groups. Every year a workshop will be organized to report on each main research topic. The last meeting will be devoted to the final results and reports. A steering committee including the EPD advisory board-executive committee will meet once a year to supervise the completion of each task and decide on the allocation of funding.