Prof. Dr. W. Metzger, former president of the German Psychological Association (DGPs), and Dr. M. Cremer, director of the Institute for Documentation (IDW), encouraged the foundation of an institute for psychological information and documentation.
Prof. Dr. C. Graf Hoyos presented a planning study which served as the basis for further considerations between representatives of the DGPs, the IDW, and the Library of Saarland University. In the following period, the Commission for Information and Documentation of the DGPs, founded in 1967, continued activities to advance the subject.
In the spring of 1970, the executive committee of the DGPs, under the chairmanship of Prof. Dr. C. F. Graumann, came to the decision to establish an institute for psychology information and documentation. This decision was supported shortly thereafter by the entire executive committee of the Federation of German Psychologists’ Associations and, in the fall of 1970, also by the participants of the DGPs general membership meeting. On behalf of the DPGs and in cooperation with the IDW, Prof. Dr. G. Reinert developed a strategy outlining organization and financing.
The project “Information and Documentation in Psychology” was approved. From the beginning it was called the “Zentralstelle für Psychologische Information und Dokumentation” (ZPID; Center of psychological information and documentation)
Financed by funds from the IDW (Max Planck Institute), the first five employees began working under the direction/leadership of Prof. Dr. G. Reinert. Until the end of 1987, the ZPID was operated as a project financed by various changing sources at the University of Trier.
After an evaluation by the Science Council in 1985, the ZPID was recognized as a “central scientific institution” at the University of Trier. Subsequently, the funding was provided by the so-called “Blue List” of the federal-state government institutions, which later became the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Science Association (WGL; typically called the Leibniz Association). ZPID has been a member of the WGL since 1997.
As of January 1, 2013, the ZPID is a legally independent institution under public law in the federal state of Rhineland-Palatinate. It is still located at the University of Trier, with which it cooperates scientifically. As a Leibniz Institute, it is evaluated every seven years by the senate of the Leibniz Association. The governing body of ZPID consists of a director, an administrative council, and a scientific advisory committee.