Innovative multi-hub Global Arts and Psychology Seminar (GAPS), April 28-29, at universities around the globe

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Graz, Austria, one of five hubs.

The Global Arts and Psychology Seminar (GAPS), on April 28-29, will bring together graduate students and scholars around the globe, especially in music and psychology. There will be integrated keynote talks, breakout sessions, and workshops, at universities in 5 hubs:

  • Graz, Austria
  • La Plata, Argentina
  • Sydney, Australia
  • Sheffield, UK
  • Boston, USA

The seminar offers a novel mix of in-person and virtual conferencing. It is a pilot run for a possible major professional conference in summer 2018.

The request for papers invites graduate students to submit brief abstracts. The deadline for abstract submission is Apr 7. Existing or previously presented papers are welcome.

The lead organizer and innovator is long-time #flyingless supporter Richard Parncutt, a professor of systematic musicology at Uni Graz, Austria. “The purpose of the new conference format is to go global,” Parncutt says, “opening up to colleagues in as many countries and regions as possible, regardless of financial means.” He suggests the conference can halve CO2 emissions per participant by eliminating most of the flying. For practical reasons, the project is starting with a relatively small number of hubs, but the “cloudcast” approach means that the number is practically unlimited: each hub transmits its local presentations live to the cloud and all other hubs can choose which presentations to include in their virtual program, either live or with a time delay.

I’m personally delighted that my university, Tufts University, will host the “Boston” hub — the actual location is the university’s Medford/Somerville campus. For this hub, the schedule is entirely on Apr 28. Tufts has a long record of great work in music and psychology, including by former provost Jamshed Bharucha and current internationally known music psychology professor Aniruddh Patel. As the organizer for the Talloires Declaration, Tufts also has been a leader in encouraging university communities to develop more environmentally sustainable operations during a time of climate change.

This event offers a distinctive combination of in-person presence at each hub and global reach across the hubs. We will be connected virtually, but the coffee in the morning, the handshakes with new colleagues, perhaps the glass of wine at the end of the day, and the sense of an exciting event in the conference rooms themselves, learning about important new research in music and psychology, will all be real. I hope to see you there!

tufts
Tufts University, Medford/Somerville Campus — the “Boston” hub.
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