Students and junior researchers hear from music academic leads about careers in musical research.

By City Press Office (City Press Office), Published

Laudan Nooshin, Professor of Music, and Dr Gabrielle Messeder, Visiting Lecturer from the Department of Performing Arts at City, University of London organised a one-day workshop for students and early career researchers (ECRs) aimed at promoting research careers in music.

‘Understanding Impact in Music Research: A Training Workshop for Postgraduate Students and Early Career Researchers’ provided the chance for participants to learn more about music research, to explore some of the issues involved and reflect on the impact potential of their own work.

The workshop was the first in a series of events, with City taking a leading role nationally and internationally to promote understanding and good practice of research impact work in music.

The day included eight presentations by Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 impact case study leads on a variety of topics, from community engagement and social impact in arts to development research, sustainability and impact in album production, aural diversity, creating impact through heritage collaborations and impactful research through international collaborations with LGBTI communities in Latin America.

The second part of the event divided participants into breakout groups to discuss ideas for impact related to their own research. Students also had the opportunity to ask questions about the REF, the meaning of ‘impact’ in this context, and how they could further develop this in their research projects in a supportive, friendly environment.

Chairs of the breakout groups alongside Professor Nooshin included:

  • Jeanice Brooks, University of Southampton
  • Rosie Perkins, Royal College of Music
  • Amanda Villepastour, University of Cardiff
  • Lucy Durán, SOAS
  • Poppy Spowage, Queen Mary, University of London

A photo of attendees in discussion

Several students commented that although they were aware of the importance of impact, this had been something they had been struggling to implement in their own work.

Thomas Graves, PhD candidate at the University of Durham, said:

I am very appreciative that City has put this together, as it touched upon many important areas of an academic career that as PhD students we don’t often hear about.

It was extremely informative getting to know the basics about the REF. I particularly found Fiorella’s advice regarding publishing and early career research to be very useful during the group discussion.

Kristl Kirk, PhD candidate at the University of York, said:

It was particularly valuable to hear about specific projects and the challenges faced by researchers in evidencing impact in a meaningful way to meet REF criteria.

The day concluded with a plenary session, in which students fed back their ideas and suggestions to the whole group.

A recording of the full workshop can be viewed in two separate parts:

Part 1

Part 2

Find out more about the PhD/DPhil Music course at City.

Read more about all postgraduate research degrees at City.