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Durham University

Institute of Medieval and Early Modern Studies (IMEMS)

Staff and Governance

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. 

Professor Janet Montgomery, BSc (Hons) 1st class, PhD

Professor in the Department of Archaeology
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 42980
Room number: 204A

Contact Professor Janet Montgomery (email at

Graduated in Archaeological Science (BSc Hons. 1st class) in 1996 University of Bradford

Received her NERC funded doctorate in 2002 University of Bradford.

2003- 2007 NERC Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Bradford,

2007-2010 was Lecturer in Archaeological Science at the University of Bradford

Janet’s doctoral thesis awarded in 2002 (available to download from the AHDS website: was the first study to apply combined radiogenic lead and strontium isotope analysis to British archaeological humans. It explored such topics as how enamel lead compositions of archaeological humans become culturally focussed following the widespread use of metals, differential diagenesis of enamel, dentine and bone and the potential of lead and strontium to identify migration to, and within, Britain.
She has published her work in the journals of several disciplines: archaeological, biological, geochemical, geological and environmental. With various collaborators and students, Janet is currently working on a wide range of archaeological projects of humans and animals ranging in date from the Neolithic to the 19th century and funded by the NERC, AHRC, ESRF, Wellcome, British Academy, Royal Archaeological Institute, Royal Irish Academy, Leverhulme Trust, English Heritage and Historic Scotland. Of note is the Beaker People Project (PIs Profs. Parker-Pearson, Richards and Chamberlain) and The Gristhorpe Man Project which she co-directs with Nigel Melton. The Gristhorpe Man monograph was published in December 2013 by Oxbow.

In addition to archaeological case studies, her research continues on the two main themes of her NERC fellowship which are fundamental to a better understanding of how isotope analysis can be applied to archaeological questions of diet and mobility. These are the timing, duration and progression of enamel biomineralization and how it impacts on the dietary and mobility information obtained, and with her long-standing collaborator Professor Jane Evans at the British Geological Survey, environmental mapping of biosphere 87Sr/86Sr in Britain so the data obtained from humans and animals can be interpreted. The map published in 2010 is regularly updated and available here:


Research Groups

Department of Archaeology

  • Bioarchaeology Research Group

Research Projects

Department of Archaeology

  • A re-appraisal of the Early Neolithic Inhabitants of Shetland
  • Adolescence, Migration and Health in Medieval England: the osteological evidence
  • Building Silbury Hill - where did the antler picks come from?
  • Managing Risk in Early Complex Societies
  • The Gristhorpe Man Project
  • Timelines in Teeth: investigating the timing and pattern of enamel maturation in developing human teeth

Research Interests

  • Isotopic and trace element studies of diet and residential mobility in modern and archaeological humans and animals
  • Fundamental and developmental aspects of isotope and trace element systems in bone, teeth and the environment


Chapter in book

Edited book

Journal Article


Working Paper

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: