Music, Industry, Culture & Society (MICS)

ERMeCHS research cluster
MICS research cluster

Music is one of the most popular and globalized cultural forms. The economic importance and the cultural and global significance of the music industry is considerable. Moreover, this industry is at the forefront of technological and societal innovations; it can be a site of social change and social reproduction. Further, work in the music industry is often precarious, and access is unequal.   

Despite this, music remains a powerful means of communication and identification, tying together – as well as refracting – subcultures, communities, nations, and regions. For many people, music is an indispensable element of their daily lives.   

The focus of this cluster is therefore twofold: to study music as (1) an ecosystem and (2) a lens and means to tackle societal challenges. In particular, its researchers focus on diverse questions concerned with the production, distribution, and consumption of music, as part of music ecosystems. Topics include current developments in the music business including festivalization and digitalization, and issues of work, diversity, and resilience. Moreover, this cluster examines how music can contribute to both the remaking and solving of societal challenges, how it can increase well-being, catalyze digital innovations, and foster mutual understanding between globalized audiences. 


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