Peter Barber is a diplomatic historian by training and became responsible for maps in the Department of Manuscripts in the British Library shortly after joining in 1975. In 1987 he transferred to the Map Library as Deputy Map Librarian and succeeded Tony Campbell as Head of Map Collections. He has published extensively on medieval world maps, on British mapmaking in the 16th century, on the British Library's cartographical and topographical collections, and on map use and the relationship between mapping and government in the early modern period. He is Fellow of the Royal Society of Antiquaries, the Royal Historical Society, and the Royal Geographical Society. He is an honorary editorial board member of Mapforum.