Welcome to SysMus!

The SysMus conferences (International Conference of Students of Systematic Musicology) are annual student-run events designed to allow advanced students in the fields of systematic musicology and music science – particularly those studying for PhDs or completing Masters’ degrees – to meet and discuss their research. Keynote speakers include internationally renowned researchers working in various sub-fields of systematic musicology and music science.

SysMus is dedicated to including a broad range of topics within its conferences, representative of the great diversity within systematic musicology: music perception, music cognition, music psychology, music therapy, music modelling, music information retrieval, musical acoustics, music theory and analysis, music sociology, music education, music technology, music and culture, music and semiotics, and music philosophy.

SysMus takes place at different international venues and welcomes participants from all over the world. We are looking forward to meeting you at one of the next SysMus conferences!

The SysMus Council & the SysMus Executive Committee

SysMus Conference Concept

The SysMus conference series was co-founded by Manuela Marin and Richard Parncutt in 2008. SysMus08 took place in Graz, Austria, having received abstract submission on a wide variety of topics from 14 countries. This success has led to further SysMus conferences, designed and organised by students for students under the supervision of experienced researchers in the field.


SysMus promotes...

  • systematic musicology as an interdisciplinary research field
  • high academic standards
  • the dialogue between different generations of researchers
  • transparency, fairness and tolerance
  • gender equality in academia

...and achieves this by

  • exposing students to a wide range of subfields of systematic musicology
  • helping to create a research identity which goes beyond highly specialised fields
  • selecting institutions with an internationally recognised profile in systematic musicology for SysMus venues
  • improving the SysMus conference concept by evaluations and discussions in the SysMus Council
  • applying a double-blind peer-review procedure to all submissions
  • recruiting an international review committee consisting of PhD-students and Post-Docs recommended by leading professors in the field
  • aiming for a long-term balance in the number of male and female keynotes and committee members
  • encouraging the discussion between different generations of researchers in a relaxed atmosphere
  • keeping the maximum number of SysMus participants at around 50 per conference in order to enable effective communication and networking


SysMus offers...

  • practice giving conference presentations (talks and posters)
  • the publication of conference proceedings
  • internationally renowned keynote speakers
  • feedback from people with different research backgrounds
  • the possibility of establishing an international network
  • workshops on a variety of career-related topics
  • practice with the English language (if that is not students' mother tongue)
  • experience in conference organisation skills

...and makes this possible by

  • modelling SysMus conferences on internationally established conference concepts
  • collaborations with other organisations and sponsors
  • advertising SysMus worldwide
  • promoting a warm and productive atmosphere in which students can gain experience in conference presentation and get friendly, helpful, expert feedback
  • offering an attractive social program
  • enabling PhD students to acquire skills in conference organisation in collaboration with more experienced researchers