Proposal Guidelines

We welcome proposals on any topic relating to the Middle Ages (300-1500). Before planning your proposal, read our participation criteria and acceptance criteria.

These guidelines only apply to papers, sessions, and round table discussions. If you would like to propose an event or arrange a business meeting or reception at the IMC, please contact us directly to arrange this.

Proposing an Individual Paper

Many speakers submit papers to an individual session organiser, who will then add them to their session proposal. However, it is also possible to submit an individual paper proposal directly to the IMC. The Programming Committee will attempt to group individual papers into thematically coherent sessions.

To submit your paper:

  • Complete the Paper Proposal Form.
  • Provide details of your academic affiliation, email, and postal address.
  • Include a short abstract for the paper of no more than 100 words, in the language in which you want to present your paper.
  • Select relevant index terms for your paper.
  • Indicate any special equipment you will need (each IMC session room is equipped with data projector and PC as standard – find out more about session equipment and setup at the IMC).
  • Indicate any accessibility needs you have, such as wheelchair access, assistive listening devices, or information in alternative formats such as Braille or large print.

We will include the abstracts of papers in our online programme for the IMC. If your paper is accepted, we will contact you to give you the opportunity to make changes to your abstract before the programme appears online. If for any reason you do not wish your abstract to appear on our website, please tick the appropriate box on the form.

The deadline for submissions for individual paper proposals is always 31 August before the IMC.

Organising a Session

Sessions should have a maximum of two organisers, who are responsible for:

  • Gathering papers on a common theme.
  • Submitting a proposal, including an abstract providing a clear rationale for the session.
  • Liaising with your speakers during the year.
  • Ensuring that participants of session register for the Congress.
  • Finding replacements if any speakers need to withdraw.

You should gather three individuals to present 20-minute papers in each session, plus a moderator who will introduce them and preside over the discussion. We recommend that sessions demonstrate diversity in their range of participants, maintaining a balance of early career and established researchers, ideally from different institutions, countries, and academic backgrounds.

Before you submit your proposal, please ensure that all participants:

  • Have agreed to attend;
  • Have not already submitted a paper in another session;
  • Are aware they will need to pay the Programming and Registration Fee to attend.

Each organiser may submit a maximum of four sessions, plus one round table discussion. Please note, however, that the IMC administration may not be able to allocate the full number requested.

To propose a session:

  • Complete the Session Proposal Form.
  • Provide details of all the speakers, including affiliation, email, and postal address.
  • Include a short abstract for the session of no more than 100 words.
  • Provide relevant index terms for the session and all papers.
  • Indicate any special equipment you will need (each IMC session room is equipped with data projector and PC as standard – find out more about equipment and setup at the IMC).
  • Indicate any accessibility needs your participants may have, such as wheelchair access, assistive listening devices, or information in alternative formats such as Braille or large print.
  • The session proposal form has room for three speakers. If you want to propose a session with an additional paper or papers, please provide as many details as possible in the ‘Abstract’ box.

Session proposals will not be accepted if any of this information is missing.

We include the abstracts of sessions in the IMC online programme. If your session is accepted, we will contact all the speakers involved so they can make any changes to the abstract before it appears on our website. If you do not wish this session abstract to appear online, please tick the appropriate box on the form.

You will be the primary contact for the IMC for any queries regarding your session. If there are multiple organisers, please indicate which organiser is the primary point of contact on the proposal form. The deadline for session proposals is always 30 September before the IMC.

Moderating a Session

We strongly recommend that moderators contact all speakers of their session beforehand to familiarise themselves with the content of each paper and with the research background of each speaker before the session takes place.

The main duties of a session moderator are:

  • To introduce each speaker (be aware that there may be non-specialists in the audience who do not know a speaker, even if they are well-known in their field);
  • To make sure that each speaker finishes his or her paper on time. You may need to bring a watch with you, as session rooms may not have accurate clocks;
  • To make sure that the session starts and finishes on time so that the room can be prepared for the next session;
  • To initiate discussion after all papers have been presented;
  • To ask questions if none are forthcoming from the audience;
  • To moderate the discussion, including ensuring that the session and all its participants adhere to the IMC policy on dignity and mutual respect.

Session Sponsors

Sponsoring a session is an opportunity for institutions and publishers to promote themselves, new publications, or recent research projects. It does not necessarily involve making a direct financial contribution; institutions may provide email addresses, sabbatical time, access to facilities, or other types of support to the participants of the session.

The following groups may be listed as sponsors of a session:

  • Individuals or a group of colleagues (post-graduate students, independent scholars, university departments, societies etc.).
  • A named individual acting on behalf of an academic society, university department, research project, a museum, a journal or publisher, etc. In these cases the body on whose behalf the organiser is acting is termed the sponsor.