The Digital Folk Report is here!

The research phase of the Digital Folk project has officially come to an end, but its initial legacy has now taken the form of the Digital Folk Report – available here!

The report is essentially designed to draw out some of the key early findings from the research project, and suggest ways in which they might be considered directly relevant for readers who are creating, developing or maintaining online resources for folk arts participants.img_1248

The report includes a brief explanation of the project’s scope and methods, a list of contributors, and provides summaries of the types of digital resources and practices currently available to folkies, as well as a run down of who these digital folkies tend to be (spoiler alert – it’s not all about ‘the kids’!), and a discussion of how and why participants use digital technologies in the course of their folk arts activities.  The sections that follow briefly consider ‘big issues’ around concepts of digital democracy and the boundaries of acceptable and transgressive behaviours. Finally, the report outlines potential challenges and opportunities for future digital folk developments, including recommendations for resource development.

The report was launched in a special event at Cecil Sharp House, the home of the English Folk Dance and Song Society, which you can read more about here.  My fellow Digital Folk researcher, Lucy Wright, and I have now set to work developing the next (and main) output for the project’s findings: a co-authored academic book… more to follow.

If the report raises interesting questions for you, and you’re interested in discussing in more detail the possible application of our findings or recommendations in a current or future folk arts web-resource or digital technology, don’t hesitate to get in contact with me via or PM me via this blog!

AHRC Doctoral Opportunities in Music at the University of Sheffield

The Department of Music at the University of Sheffield is delighted to announce opportunities for AHRC-funded PhD study through its involvement in the White Rose College of the Arts & Humanities (WRoCAH).  Around 220 PhD
studentships will be awarded by WRoCAH universities (Sheffield, Leeds and York) in the next 4 years.

We encourage applications for PhD study in Musicology, Ethnomusicology, Psychology of Music, Composition, Performance, Music Technology and Music Education. The application form is available via this link:

Applicants for an AHRC studentship must have been accepted for a place to study at Sheffield. The AHRC studentship application form and details of how to apply are only available from the WRoCAH website:

Applications must be submitted by midnight GMT on 2 February 2015. Successful applicants will be notified by mid April 2015. For further questions about the programme or application process, please

Dr George Nicholson
Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Music, University of Sheffield
Jessop Building
34 Leavygreave Road
Sheffield S3 7RD

0114 222 0479 <>

Postgraduate Open Day – Thurs 27th Nov

The University of Sheffield will be holding its next Postgraduate Open Day on Thursday 27th November 2014

Alongside gathering more general information about the University, you will have the opportunity to visit the Department of Music, meet with staff and current students, and discuss the variety of postgraduate courses on offer. Currently, we offer the following taught programmes:

* MA in Ethnomusicology
* MA (Distance Learning) in World Music Studies
* MA (Distance Learning) in Traditional Music of the British Isles.
* MA in Musicology
* MA in Composition
* MA in Music Management
* MA in Music Performance
* MA (Distance Learning) in Music Psychology in Education
* MA in Psychology of Music
* MA (Distance Learning) in Psychology for Musicians
* MA (Onsite or Distance Learning) in Sonic Arts

This will also be an opportunity to find out more about the postgraduate research programmes available in the department (MMus; MPhil; PhD).

To find out more information about our open days, or to register a place, please visit:

Meanwhile, further information on our postgraduate courses can be found here:
If you would like to know more about our programmes in Ethnomusicology, Word Music Studies or Traditional Music of the British Isles, but are unable to make it to the open day, feel free to contact me at