International Council for Traditions of Music and Dance

A Non-Governmental Organization in Formal Consultative Relations with UNESCO

Minutes of the 3rd Assembly of ICTM Study Groups Chairs

Held at Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand, on 16 July 2019.

Chair: Ursula Hemetek, Secretary General.

In attendance: Yang Yuanzheng (Musics of East Asia), Ardian Ahmedaja (Multipart Music), Ulrich Morgenstern (Music and Dance of the Slavic World), Daniela Ivanova (Music and Dance in Southeastern Europe), Razia Sultanova (Music of the Turkic-speaking World, Global History of Music), Yves Defrance (Audiovisual Ethnomusicology), Sara Selleri (Music, Education and Social Inclusion), Oded Erez (Mediterranean Music Studies), Svanibor Pettan (Music and Minorities), Natalie Sarrazin (Music and Allied Arts of Greater South Asia), Susana Sardo (Historical Sources), Zdravko Blažeković (Iconography of the Performing Arts), Suraya Agayeva (Maqām), Catherine Foley (Ethnochoreology), Sylvie Le Bomin (African Musics), Huib Schippers (Applied Ethnomusicology), Barbara L. Hampton (Music and Gender), Kendra Stepputat (Sound, Movement, and the Sciences), Gisa Jähnichen (Musical Instruments), Kirk Sullivan (Music and Dance of Oceania), Patricia Matusky (Performing Arts of Southeast Asia), Jessie Vallejo (Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean); Salwa El-Shawan Castelo-Branco (President), Don Niles (Chair, Executive Board Committee for Study Groups), Carlos Yoder (Executive Assistant). 

Opening of the meeting

  1. The Chair opened the Assembly at 16:59, welcoming all Study Group Chairs or their appointed representatives. 

Minutes of the previous Assembly

  1. The minutes of the previous Assembly, as published on the ICTM website, were discussed, and no business arising from them was noted.


  1. All participants introduced themselves. The only Study Groups not represented at the Assembly were those on Music Archaeology and on Music in the Arab World.

Report by Secretary General

  1. Hemetek began her report by showing a list of all active Study Groups and their Chairs. She highlighted the Study Groups that the Executive Board (EB) had officially recognized since the previous Assembly: on Global History of Music; on Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean; on Music, Education and Social Inclusion; and on Sound, Movement, and the Sciences.
  2. Hemetek explained how the results of the First General Survey of ICTM Members had shown that the most important type of scholarly events for ICTM members were Study Group symposia (read more on item 14–17 of the Minutes of the 44th Ordinary Meeting of the General Assembly of ICTM Members).
  3. Hemetek related how in 2018 the Secretariat had supported the symposia of the Study Groups on Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean (Salto, Uruguay); on Mediterranean Music Studies (Essaouira, Morocco); on African Musics (Legon, Ghana); and on Music of the Turkic-speaking World (Trabzon, Turkey). The total disbursed was EUR 13,550, and the funds had been taken from the Maud Karpeles Fund and Young Scholars Fund. She added that in 2019 the symposium of the Study Group on Multipart Music (Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina) would be supported with EUR 255 to fund the participation of three local students.
  4. Hemetek announced that based on that positive experience, the Secretariat had proposed a new ICTM Study Group Allowance during the 2018 meeting of the EB. The allowance had been approved then, and it would be introduced at the present Assembly. 
  5. Hemetek explained that the aims of the Study Group Allowance would primarily be to support the travel and/or accommodation of ICTM members who wished to present their research at Study Group symposia held in parts of the world where the Council was underrepresented.
  6. Hemetek announced that the Allowance would be made available biennially, to fund Study Group symposia held in non-World Conference years (e.g., 2020, 2022, 2024, etc.). She explained that it would not be possible to support symposia held in conference years, as the Council already supported the participation of delegates to World Conferences with approximately EUR 15,000.
  7. Hemetek added that the Allowance would tentatively distribute EUR 8,000–10,000 among all qualifying Study Groups, every two years.
  8. Hemetek outlined the terms and conditions for the Allowance, concerning regional priority, affiliation, collaboration, membership, and previous funding (these, as well as the Allowance's timeline for 2020 are available on the pages of the Maud Karpeles Fund and Young Scholars Fund).
  9. Finally, Hemetek reported on those Study Group elections that the Secretariat had helped to run in the past two years: for the Study Groups on Music and Dance of Oceania (October 2017), on Historical Sources (April 2018), on Ethnochoreology (April 2018), on Music and Dance of the Slavic World (September 2018), and on African Musics (May 2019). 
  10. Erez enquired whether Study Groups had to comply to any rules regarding the procedure of running their elections. Hemetek replied that while the Memorandum on Study Groups did not dictate any particular way, she considered that "a minimum of transparency" should be maintained. 

Report by Don Niles, Chair of EB Committee concerning Study Groups

  1. Niles thanked Hemetek for allowing him to address the Assembly in his capacity of Chair of the EB Committee for Study Groups. 
  2. Niles reminded the assembled to get well acquainted with the Memorandum on Study Groups, as it contained very useful information about the affiliation, operations, and organization of Study Groups.
  3. Niles remarked that Study Groups did not need to have bylaws in place, and that in fact some Study Groups had no bylaws at all and managed to operate without any issue. 
  4. Niles reported how the EB had recently approved an amendment to the Memorandum on Study Groups that clarified that the face-to-face meeting that a Study-Group-in-the-Making had to organize as a requirement for affiliation, should not be called a "symposium" but a "preparatory scholarly meeting" instead. He explained that the reason for the change had been to avoid misnumbering symposia once the Study-Group-in-the-Making had been fully affiliated. 
  5. Stepputat voiced her concern that in some contexts such "preparatory scholarly meetings" would not be funded by host institutions, because their internal requirements mandated that the meeting in question should have to be called "a symposium" or "a conference." 
  6. Niles communicated that a number of people had told him they would find it "very valuable" if every Study Group would hold their business meeting during World Conferences.
  7. Niles pointed out that he was aware that the Study Group on Musical Instruments held their symposia on the same year as World Conferences, and that therefore they might consider unnecessary to hold another business meeting a few months later. However, as World Conferences are attended by a very large amount of people, Niles argued that holding a business meeting might be "a good introduction to the Study Group" for those who would not have been able to attend the earlier symposium, and that it might also result in new Study Group members.
  8. Niles stressed that the EB Committee for Study Groups was not compelling Study Groups to hold business meetings during World Conferences, but only suggesting to do so for the benefits outlined above. 
  9. Niles introduced the question of who would be eligible to participate in Study Group symposia, and how. He related how some Study Groups would strictly enforce a rule asking all presenters to be members of ICTM, and quoted how the relevant paragraph of the Memorandum on Study Groups allowed for some level of flexibility: "A Study Group may, however, invite experts or others that are not members of ICTM to participate in its activities on a temporary basis." He then asked the assembled to share their present practices, stressing that according to EB Committee for Study Groups there was "neither right nor wrong way" of approaching the issue. 
  10. Matusky reported how she had been part of a panel at the latest symposium of the Study Group on Performing Arts of Southeast Asia (2018), formed by three ICTM members and two invited artists who gave demonstrations. She had consulted with the Secretariat about whether the artists needed to become ICTM members in order to participate in the symposium, and the Secretary General had replied that they did not, as they were effectively "invited experts." 
  11. Niles considered that including participation of non-members at the symposia of the Study Group on Music and Dance of Oceania was "essential, " because Study Group members were so few, and symposia held so rarely. 
  12. Blažeković pointed out that the Study Group on Iconography of the Performing Arts faced similar challenges to those reported by Niles. He asked whether he could send a preliminary programme of their upcoming symposium to the Secretariat, so that those participants who were not members could be sent invitations to join the Council. The Secretary General agreed to the suggestion. Niles observed that such an approach would not work in the context of the Study Group on Music and Dance of Oceania.
  13. Sardo reported that symposia of the Study Group on Historical Sources would sometimes host panels on research projects that include people from outside academia, adding that those individuals were generally not interested in joining the Council, but whose participation was important for the symposium and the Study Group. 
  14. Sultanova related how the keynote speaker of the 2016 symposium of the Study Group on Music of the Turkic-speaking World had been Karl Reichel, a renowned German philologist who had "never expressed interest in any kind of music scholarship." 
  15. Niles thanked the assembled for sharing their examples of present practices, which he considered to be in agreement to what was written in the aforementioned section of the Memorandum. 
  16. Selleri asked whether membership fee waivers had been implemented in the past to encourage participation in Study Group symposia, especially for participants from regions underrepresented in ICTM. Hemetek explained how participants of the 2018 symposium of the Study Group on Music and Dance in Latin America and the Caribbean who had received financial support and had not been already members of the Council had been given supported memberships for 2018. Vallejo considered that the strategy had been "extremely effective" in raising interest for the symposium, the following World Conference, and ICTM in general. 
  17. Niles thanked the assembled for their "good ideas and suggestions," adding that if would inform a future revision of the Memorandum on Study Groups

Discussion of Guidelines for Publications

  1. Pettan thanked Hemetek for allowing him to address the Assembly in his capacity of Chair of the EB Committee for Publications. 
  2. Pettan presented the Guidelines on Publications and opened the floor for their discussion.
  3. Following a lengthy discussion about the contents of the Guidelines and the implications of Study Group publications adhering to them, Pettan thanked the assembled for their feedback, and invited them to send suggestions for amending the Guidelines directly to him, so that they would be discussed by the members of the EB Committee for Publications. 

Discussion of means of communication provided by ICTM

  1. Hemetek asked the assembled whether they were satisfied with the services that the Secretariat was providing in terms of facilitating communication among Study Groups and their memberships. 
  2. Erez reported that the Study Group on Mediterranean Music Studies had launched a blog, following advice from Yoder in finding the right third-party platform that would host it. Erez asked whether such a blogging platform could be integrated into the structure of the ICTM website in the future. Yoder answered that since 2011—when Study Groups started to edit their own content on the ICTM website—the amount of powerful and easy-to-use blogging platforms had increased remarkably, so he would instead recommend Study Groups to start their blogs elsewhere and be linked from the corresponding Study Group's section on the ICTM website. Yoder warned, however, that the issue of intellectual property (i.e., who would own this content) would have to be addressed. 
  3. Sardo asked whether a mailing list could be created for the Study Group on Historical Sources. Yoder replied affirmatively, giving examples of Study Groups that already benefited from such means of communication. Yoder invited all Study Groups to consider opening a mailing list, adding that in some cases it would be more effective than opening a Facebook or Google Group, because those services would not work in territories such as China. 

Other business

  1. Pettan asked the assembled to encourage the participation of newcomers into their business meetings. He added that perhaps it would be beneficial for total newcomers if at the beginning of business meetings a few minutes were dedicated to summarizing the history of the Study Group, its current Executive Committee, and its most recent symposia. 
  2. It was suggested that in the programme of the next World Conference the Study Group meetings could be labelled "open access Study Group meeting," to clearly indicate that attendance was open to all. 


  1. Hemetek called for a motion to adjourn. Moved by Pettan, seconded by Hampton, motion carried. The Assembly was adjourned at 18:22

We hereby certify that this document comprises the Minutes of 3rd Meeting of the Assembly of ICTM Study Group Chairs, held in Bangkok, Thailand, on 16 July 2019, and that its contents have been examined by us and that to the best of our knowledge and belief the content thereof is true, correct, and complete.

Ursula Hemetek, Secretary General

Carlos Yoder, Executive Assistant