Jo Van Steenbergen (PhD KULeuven [Belgium], 2003) is research professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at Ghent University (Belgium).
He engages with the social and cultural history of the pre-modern Islamic world, with a particular focus on the Islamic middle period (ca. 1000-1500), on Egypt and Syria, on the practices, discourses and structures of power elites in the sultanate of Cairo (ca. 1200-1517), and on the de/construction of grand narratives in Mamluk/Islamic history.
He was a research fellow of the Netherlands-Flemish Institute in Cairo (NVIC, 1997-8, 2003), a research assistant at KULeuven (Belgium) and the Flemish Science Foundation (FWO) (1998-2003), a lecturer at the University of St Andrews (2004-7), a senior research fellow at the Annemarie Schimmel Kolleg: History and Society during the Mamluk Era (1250-1517) (Bonn, 2014-15), and a visiting lecturer/professor at the British Museum and at the School of Oriental and African Studies (London) (2006-13), at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes (Paris) (2008), and at the National University of Malaysia (2009).
Jo Van Steenbergen has been the recipient of a European Research Council Starting Grant (2009-14) and of a European Research Council Consolidator Grant (2016-21), for research projects on the political history and historiography of 15th-century Egypt and Syria (‘The Mamlukisation of the Mamluk Sultanate’). Jo Van Steenbergen was general editor of al-Masāq: the Journal of the Medieval Mediterranean (Routledge/Society for the Medieval Mediterranean) (2011-16). He is a programming committee member of the annual International Medieval Congress (Leeds, UK), editorial board member of Mamluk Studies (Bonn UP/ASK), The Medieval Mediterranean (Brill) and Annales Islamologiques (IFAO), president of the Society for the Medieval Mediterranean and series editor of Critical Approaches to Arabic Historiography (EUP). He was an ERC panel member (SH6: Study of the Human Past, Starting Grant, 2018, 2020) and a member of the 'Conseil Scientifique' of the Institut Français d'Archéologie Orientale (IFAO) (2018-20).