Professor Margot Finn

Margot Finn is President of the Royal Historical Society and Chair in Modern British History at University College London. She is an historian of Britain and the British colonial world in the ‘very long 19th century’, c. 1750-1914. Margot was recently Principal Investigator on the major Leverhulme Trust-funded project ‘East India Company at Home, 1757-1857’, and is a former Vice-President of the RHS. She is also a Trustee of the Victoria and Albert Museum, and was a REF History Sub-panel member. Her publications include After Chartism: Class and Nation in English Radical Politics 1848-1874 (Cambridge, 2003), and The Character of Credit: Personal Debt in English Culture, 1740-1914 (Cambridge, 2003).

Professor Olivette Otele

Olivette Otele is Professor of History at Bath Spa University. She is a specialist in European colonial and post-colonial history, particularly the link between history, collective memory and geopolitics in relation to British and French colonial pasts.  Otele has written widely for academic and broader audiences. Her most recent book, African Europeans: An Untold History (2019), examines the long history of Europeans of African descent. She serves on the board of the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, as a committee member for the Society for the Study of French History, and for the V&A Museum’s research committee. As Vice-President, Professor Otele will particularly focus on matters pertaining to Membership, including the Society’s work on equality and diversity in the historical profession, and new developments in our support of early career historians.

Richard Fisher
Vice-President & Chair of Publications Committee

Richard Fisher read history at Balliol College, Oxford and has worked in the university press sector for the past thirty-five years. Formerly Managing Director of Academic Publishing at Cambridge University Press, he is currently Vice-Chair of Yale University Press and a non-executive director of Edinburgh University Press. He is an Associate Editor of the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, responsible for sportsmen and sportswomen, and serves as the Academic and Policy Correspondent of the Independent Publishers Guild: he has also served on numerous sub-committees of the British Academy, the AHRC and HEFCE concerned with scholarly communication. His own publications range widely, and he claims to be the only person alive to have been published in History of European Ideas, the New Musical Express, and the Newsletter of the Welsh Golfing Union. He has served a previous term (2007-2010) as Vice-President of the Society and Chair of its Publications Committee.

Professor Jonathan Morris
Vice-President & Chair of Research Policy Committee

Jonathan Morris is Research Professor in Modern History at the University of Hertfordshire.  He is an expert on the global history of coffee, and enjoys an international reputation as a specialist in the transnational history of consumption and modern Italy. His most recent publication is Coffee: A Global History (Reaktion, 2019).  He leads the Heritage for Business unit within the University of Hertfordshire’s Heritage Hub and was a finalist in Most Innovative Contribution to Business-Collaboration category in the 2018 Times Higher Education Awards for his work with Nestlé Nespresso.  Jonathan is a member of the REF2021 History Sub-Panel.

Professor Ken Fincham
Vice-President and Chair of Education Policy Committee

Ken Fincham is Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Kent. His research centres on politics, religion and culture in early modern Britain. His publications include Prelate as Pastor: The Episcopate of James I (OUP, 1990) and (with Nicholas Tyacke) Altars Restored: the Changing Face of English Religious Worship c.1547-1700 (OUP, 2007). He is one of three directors of the AHRC-funded ‘Clergy of the Church of England Database Project’, and sits on the editorial board of Boydell & Brewer’s Studies in Modern British Religious History series.

Professor Frances Andrews

Frances Andrews is Professor in Medieval History at the University of St Andrews, where she founded the Institute of Mediaeval Studies. She completed her BA and PhD at the University of London. Her writing explores the history of medieval Italy and of the medieval church, twin interests reflected in her editorship of Brill’s Medieval Mediterranean series and Boydell’s History of Medieval Religion. Her own publications include The Early Humiliati (1999) and The Other Friars (2006), as well as several (co-) edited collections. She is currently completing a project on the employment of regular religious in the governments of late medieval Europe.

Professor Jon Stobart
Honorary Treasurer

Jon Stobart has held academic positions at the University of Northampton, Coventry University and Staffordshire University. He is a social and economic historian of eighteenth-century England, with particular interests in the histories of retailing and consumption. Much of Professor Stobart’s work is collaborative, interdisciplinary, and international and he has worked with geographers, art historians, heritage professionals and historians from the UK and across Europe. His most recent book, Consumption and the Country House was published by OUP in 2016. Professor Stobart is a founding editor of the journal History of Retailing and Consumption, a member of the AHRC Peer Review College and has sat on a number of academic councils and committees including the Economic History Society, Social History Society and Northamptonshire Record Society.

Dr Alana Harris
Honorary Secretary

Alana Harris is Lecturer in Modern British History at King’s College London and her work sits at the intersections of the history of gender, sexuality, ethnicity and religiosity. Her publications include The Schism of ’68: Catholics, Contraception and Humanae Vitae in Europe, 1945-75 (Palgrave Macmillan 2018), Love and Romance in Britain 1918-1970 (Palgrave Macmillan 2014) (co-edited with Tim Jones)and Faith in the Family: A Lived Religious History of English Catholicism, 1945-82 (MUP 2013).

She has a strong interest in gender and racial equality and chaired her Department’s successful Athena SWAN Bronze award. She is a member of a number of editorial and advisory boards and enjoys taking her research beyond the academy through various exhibitions, public engagement workshops, and media and theatre consultancies.

Dr Andrew Smith
Co-Honorary Director of Communications

Andrew WM Smith is a Senior Lecturer in Contemporary History and Politics at the University of Chichester. His work focuses principally on the French and Francophone world with an interest in identities beyond the frame of the nation state. Recent articles have addressed minority nationalism, decolonization, the Second World War, and linguistic politics. He is the author of Terror and Terroir: The Winegrowers of the Languedoc and Modern France (Manchester University Press, September 2016), and editor (with Chris Jeppesen) of Britain, France and the Decolonization of Africa: Future Imperfect? (UCL Press, March 2017).

Dr Alix Green
Co-Honorary Director of Communications

Alix Green is Lecturer in History at the University of Essex. She entered academia after a career in policy, strategy and government affairs. She founded the Public History seminar series at the Institute of Historical Research in London, and is a juror for the Public History Prize, which the RHS runs in association with the IHR seminar and the Historical Association. Her publications include History, policy and public purpose: historians and historical thinking in government (Palgrave, 2016) and Historians on the inside: thinking with history in policy’ in A Companion to Public History (Wiley Blackwell, forthcoming 2017).

Professor Andrew Spicer
Literary Director

Andrew Spicer is Professor of Early Modern European History at Oxford Brookes University. He completed his doctorate at the University of Southampton on exiles from France and the Southern Netherlands in the late sixteenth century. He has published widely on early modern immigrant communities, as well as nineteenth-century interest in the Huguenots. His more recent work has focused on the socio-cultural impact of the Reformation, particularly sacred space, art & architecture, and the material culture & setting of worship. He is an editor of the Ecclesiastical History Society’s Studies in Church History series. Besides Calvinist Churches in Early Modern Europe (Manchester, 2007), he has published a number of edited volumes, most recently Parish Churches in the Early Modern World (Farnham, 2016). He is currently completing a monograph entitled Conflict and the Religious Landscape: Cambrai and the Southern Netherlands, c. 1566–1621 to be published by Brill.

Professor Richard Toye
Literary Director

Richard Toye is Professor of History at the University of Exeter. He is an historian of Britain in in its global and imperial context in the period from the late nineteenth century to the present. He is the author of a number of books on Winston Churchill including The Roar of the Lion: The Untold Story of Churchill’s World War II Speeches (OUP, 2013), and Churchill’s Empire: The World That Made Him and the World He Made (Macmillan, 2010). He has also written books on persuasion in modern British politics, the history of the British Labour Party, and the Oxford Very Short Introduction to Rhetoric.