During the fourth European Academy of Dermatovenereology (EADV) congress in Brussels in 1995, enough interested parties were present to form such a society, and member lists and statutes were developed. The first ESPD scientific meeting took place during the EADV Congress in Dublin in 1997 and its first committee elections in 1999, following which it was awarded EADV Sister Society status in 2003. Pierre Thomas (France) was the inaugural chairman (1999-2005), followed by Jean. Krutmann (Germany) (2005-2008) and John Hawk (United Kingdom) (from 2008). Current other committee members are Jean Krutmann, Giovanni Leone (Italy), Marie-Claude Marguery (France), Gillian Murphy (Ireland), Rik Roelandts (Belgium) and Pierre Thomas (France).
The ESPD is open to all individuals interested in photodermatology, whatever their background, and the society has several objectives. These include the promotion of interaction between clinicians and scientists of all, but particularly European nationalities, and also the provision of advice to the general public on the adverse effects of excessive sunlight and sunbed exposure, in association where requested with the EADV. A third aim is the development of guidelines for therapeutic and diagnostic photodermatological procedures, such as recently on the photodermatoses, in association with the European Dermatology Foundation and approved by the Union of European Medical Societies, and on photopatch testing, in conjunction with the European Task Force for Photopatch Testing. A fourth goal is the encouragement of organised scientific research, and a final one the fostering of photodermatological education through the organisation of regular scientific meetings and symposia. These include particularly the annual Photodermatology Day preceding the EADV Congress, comprising a session for invited speakers on topical issues and one for the presentation of research communications.
The first of these events took place in Nice in 1998, followed by similar meetings annually in Geneva, Munich, Barcelona, Florence, London, Paris and Berlin, while World Photodermatology Days have also been organised with other photodermatological societies worldwide at World Congresses in Paris in 2002 and Buenos Aires in 2007. The ESPD also participates when invited in the meetings of national European photodermatology groups.
The society has over 110 members in Europe and abroad. Prospective new members should contact Marie-Claude Marguery, Secretary, ESPD at firstname.lastname@example.org.