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Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS)

Staff and Governance

To contact the IMEMS administrative office please use the following details:

For the Administrator (maternity cover)


T: 0191 334 6574

For the Administrative Assistant


T: 0191 334 42974


Associate Director (World Heritage): Professor Robin Coningham - view profile

Associate Director: Professor Barbara Ravelhofer - view profile

Core Staff

The day-to-day running of IMEMS is the responsibility of the Core Executive Committee, comprising the Director and Associate Directors and the Administrator. 

Publication details

Brown, A. T. (2015). Economic Life. In The Routledge History of Medieval Christianity, 1050-1500. Swanson, Robert Routledge. 295-308

Author(s) from Durham


This chapter explores the role played by the Church in the economic life of medieval Europe, both as a major landowner and a moral instructor. As such, it shows the diverse economic interests of the Church, from the old and wealthy Benedictine foundations to the newer organisation of the Cistercians. The pervasive role played by the Church in the economic life of medieval Europe often gave rise to resentment and conflict, which is explored in further detail here. However, this must be set against both the considerable expenses the Church incurred during this period, as well as the economic problems many religious institutions were experiencing. The Church also played a major role in the development of economic thought in medieval Europe, most notably in the usury laws and the concept of the just price. These laws, and the attempt by people to evade them, shaped the development of international finance and banking across this period. Whether through its collection of rent, arrears and tithe, or through the moral instruction of canon law, this chapter demonstrates the pervasive role played by the Church in the economic development of medieval Europe.

Full Executive Committee

Our Full Executive Committee is made up of the Core Executive Committee, listed above, plus a number of executive members including:

International Advisory Board

We are extremely fortunate to have be able to call on the help and guidance of colleagues from around the world who help to shape and guide our direction, strategy and international reach. Our current Advisory Board members are: