Varved lake sediments have been recognised as key archives for palaeoclimate reconstruction on the continents. Therefore, the European Lake Drilling Programme has been launched in 1996 to concentrate on lake sediment research at an European level. The programme provided an effective discussion forum and enabled to establish a dense network of research groups with different scientific approaches and expertise to work on common goals. Six annual workshops of 30-40 scientists each have been held to discuss crucial problems and new scientific ideas. The important role of regional variability of climate on the continent has been particularly adressed. Consequently, four regional working groups have been founded during the second workshop in Krakow for (1) Northern Europe, (2) Atlantic Transect, (3) Central Europe and, (4) Southern Europe. In addition, a working group for the detection of cyclicities in sediment records was established in order to search for evidences of solar and sub-Milankovitch climate forcing.
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