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Research projects

Discourses of Academization and the Music Profession in Higher Music Education (DAPHME)

About this project

Project information

Project status



Eva Georgii-Hemming

Research subject

Research environments

Higher music education across Europe is under pressure. Processes of academization along with changes in musical life in society are challenging this expert culture. To fulfil the new academic tasks music institutions must stimulate research activities within the context of artistic practice. Also, the employability agenda has progressed far. Higher music education faces the task of educating competent musicians who, on the one hand, can carry traditions and, on the other, are entrepreneurs with the skills to run a small business. A complex web of questions arises: arts practices vs. academic research; the relevance for society vs. the autonomy of art. This leads to strong debates marked by conflicting views.

The overall purpose of this comparative project is to investigate how processes of academization affect performing musician programmes across Europe. In order to do this we will explore contrasting perspectives on performing musicians’ expertise and societal mandate. The data will consist of official documents and interviews with leaders and teachers in Sweden, Norway and Germany. We will combine discourse analysis and professional theories to analyse which notions of competence, research and views of the music profession that are negotiated and renegotiated. The analyses will be performed against the background of different traditions, value systems and institutions. By doing so we are able to compare contradictions, similarities and differences on the institutional, national and international level. 

International reference group
Professor Henk Borgdorff, Leiden University, the Netherlands
Professor Helena Gaunt, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, United KingdomVice-principal Martin Prchal, The Royal Conservatoire,  the Netherlands





Research funding bodies

  • The Swedish Foundation for Humanities and Social Sciences