IDEM is a multifaceted database for researching, studying, and performing medieval and Renaissance music (up to the year 1600) in the Low Countries. IDEM intends to create a unique instrument for the preservation, study, and valorisation of the Low Countries’ cultural heritage, including both sources presently kept in the Low Countries, and sources held abroad but directly related to the region. The database integrates digital images of primary musical sources (manuscripts and prints) with the most important tools for studying the sources’ immediate context. IDEM covers not only polyphonic music but also Gregorian chant. This is vital to promoting better understanding of medieval and Renaissance music. IDEM stimulates a more holistic view by bringing the two into relation with one another.
IDEM contributes not only to excellent and innovative research, but also to the long-term safekeeping and conservation of precious sources. By offering primary sources and secondary material under a single umbrella, the database facilitates the research not only of musicologists, but also of literary and art historians, as well as performers and practice-based researchers. The database thus counters increasing specialisation by providing an essential interdisciplinary research tool. By gathering together different sorts of information that are usually studied in isolation, the database promotes a novel synthetic and broadly interdisciplinary understanding of medieval and Renaissance music and musical culture.