On 20th and 21st January 2012, the first conference of the EHPS-Net took place. During this conference, the six working groups reported on their work. About forty participants from twenty different countries attended the meeting. That appeared to be a pleasant number: fruitful discussions arose and there was opportunity for each participant to take part in the discussion.
The working group dealing with the development of the project portal presented a 'look and feel‘ for the website. This first version was accepted and will be further elaborated in the coming months; we expect the portal to be officially launched during the next meeting in September. Another group explores the possibilities for setting up an e-journal. At the meeting the discussion focused on the future status of the journal and the ideas brought forward will be elaborated during the next months. The new features of the Intermediate Data Structure (IDS; the structure in which the data of all participating databases will be transferred) were discussed. In particular, the development of extraction software for IDS will be accelerated. It was agreed upon that the group will write a manual, intended primarily for newcomers to the field of IDS. The fifth working group reported on the opportunities for European and national funding of projects. In particular the possibilities of Horizon 2020 were discussed and the implications of the new ‘ERIC-structure '. A number of countries participating in the EHPS-net already has extensive databases and knowledge in the field of development, but there are also countries that don’t have a database yet. At the conference ‘new’ countries gave a short presentation of their database or their plans for its development. The working group dealing with new databases will identify their problems and will offer support. At the meeting three new working groups were installed, focusing on resp. education, standardization of documentation about databases and the possibilities that GIS (Geographic Information System) offers in conjunction with databases.