Jo Spaans studied Theology at Leiden University, where she obtained her PhD with a dissertation on the impact of the Reformation on religious life and civic culture in the city of Haarlem. She has since held various research and teaching posts, in Amsterdam (Free University, Amsterdam Catholic University, University of Amsterdam), Leeuwarden (Fryske Akademy) and Ann Arbor, MI (U'niversity of Michigan). She came to Utrecht University in 2004 as Associate Professor in the history of Christianity. She was Research Fellow at NIAS in 2010-2011 and has been director of the NWO-funded research project 'Faultline 1700. Early Enlightenment Conversations on Religion and the State. She publishes on religion in the context of early modern Dutch culture in the widest possible sense.