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Where to now?

By the end of the International Medieval Congress (IMC) 2018, the IMC will have hosted more than 30,000 papers from medievalists at all stages of their careers.

For some, presenting a paper at the IMC has been a career-defining moment. In order to serve our delegates, we will continue to evolve as a platform for discussion and research. The IMC has always sought to foster the development of Medieval Studies. Recent innovations have included the addition of a programme of professional development workshops, giving delegates the chance to refine their skills and knowledge, as well as hands-on craft workshops, in which participants can try their hand at a range of activities, such as medieval embroidery, combat, or calligraphy.

This year, we are laying the foundations for the next 25 years. For the first time, Global Medieval Studies is a prominent feature of our programme. This shows the growing demand for papers on this subject - something we hope to encourage. In addition, this year will see the first annual New Voices Lecture. Given by Roland Betancourt, University of California, Irvine, this lecture will focus on the lives of Byzantine transgender and non-binary figures from the 5th to the 9th century. The series hopes to showcase new voices from across the field of Medieval Studies.

As we look ahead to the next 25 years, we plan to become even more inclusive, reaching out to an ever-wider range of participants, to explore new areas of research, and to incorporate new formats for presentation and research dissemination.

25 is a great milestone, but it is only the very beginning. Medieval Studies and the IMC are growing and developing in fascinating ways. The ambition of the Congress is to help in the shaping of what Medieval Studies will become.

Axel Müller
International Medieval Congress Director