Music Computing

Topic Description

The Music Computing Research at The Open University is diverse, and has focuses ranging from empowering musicians and illuminating musical activities to modelling music perception and cognition. Different aspects of our work are variously informed by musicology, psychology, ethnography, embodied cognition, pervasive interaction, mathematics and advanced computing techniques. In particular, we devise and investigate new ways to:
• Empower beginners to engage deeply with musical activities
• Provide new tools and capabilities for expert musicians and theorists
• Cast new light on how music and music perception work.
Topics of interest include the following, though applicants are very welcome to device their own topics.

Interactive Music Systems
New kinds of Musical Interaction
Computational Models of Music Perception
Physical, Gestural or Sensing Interfaces
Music and the Internet of Things
Music Technology for Rehabilitation and Therapy
New Musical Instruments
New approaches to traditional musical activities
Tools that make new kinds of musical activity possible
Innovative approaches to technology for Music Education
Collaborative Music Interaction
New interfaces for Live Coding
Evolutionary and Biologically inspired Music Systems
Music Representation
New Interactive Tools for interplay between Rhythm, Harmony, Melody or Timbre.

For more information see the Music Computing Lab website

Skills Required:

Applicants should be keenly motivated to undertake a PhD that combines Computing and Music.
A good undergraduate or masters degree in a relevant subject is helpful. Musical skill and experience is helpful.

Background Reading:

Numerous relevant publications can be found on the Music Computing Lab website, at
If you have library access, see also the book 'Music and Human Computer Interaction" edited by Holland, Wilkie, Mulholland and Seago.

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Dr Simon Holland