Research Associate in Digital Musical Instrument Design and Analysis

Imperial College London Dyson School of Design Engineering

United Kingdom

Job summary

Applications are invited for a Research Associate position in Digital Musical Instrument Design and Analysis to work on a research project investigating the cultural implications of engineering decisions in the area of music technology.  The successful candidate will be based in the Dyson School of Design Engineering at Imperial College London, where they will join the Augmented Instruments Laboratory (http://instrumentslab.org). They will...

Job listing information

  • Reference ENG02353
  • Date posted 8 November 2022
  • Closing date 6 December 2022

Key information about the role

  • Location South Kensington Campus - Hybrid
  • Position type Full time, fixed term
  • Salary £43,093 – £46,734 plus benefits
  • Department Dyson School of Design Engineering
  • Category Researcher / Non Clinical Researcher

Job description

Job summary

Applications are invited for a Research Associate position in Digital Musical Instrument Design and Analysis to work on a research project investigating the cultural implications of engineering decisions in the area of music technology. 

The successful candidate will be based in the Dyson School of Design Engineering at Imperial College London, where they will join the Augmented Instruments Laboratory (http://instrumentslab.org). They will work on the UKRI-funded Consolidator Grant "RUDIMENTS: Reflective Understanding of Digital Instruments as Musical Entanglements", which examines the values, opportunities, risks and challenges of designing new musical instruments incorporating embedded computing and artificial intelligence.

Duties and responsibilities

This role focuses on developing critical perspectives on the design and use of digital musical instruments across diverse social and cultural contexts. The successful candidate can approach this topic from one of several perspectives, including anthropology, science and technology studies (STS), human-computer interaction (HCI) or artistic practice-led research. Activities specifically associated with this post include:

    • Identifying different communities who design and perform with digital musical instruments, considering different geographic regions and genres of music, incorporating academic, industrial and independent artistic perspectives;
    • Investigating the technical and musical practices of those communities through qualitative research methods including interviews, observations and thematic analyses;
    • Conducting research in the wild and designing laboratory studies with musicians and engineers to understand how technical decisions influence musical outcomes;
    • Collaborating with other researchers on the RUDIMENTS project to design and analyse new digital musical instruments;
    • Publishing research outputs in established peer-reviewed venues, while helping develop new multimodal forms of research dissemination.

Essential requirements

Essential (E) and desirable (D) requirements

  • A PhD (or equivalent qualification or experience) in a relevant discipline, including human-computer interaction (HCI), electronic engineering, design engineering, science and technology studies (STS), music composition/performance, musicology or anthropology. (E)
  • Experience in the design, analysis or use of digital musical instruments or music software. (E)
  • Knowledge of, and experience with, qualitative research methods. (E)
  • A track record of publication in relevant peer-reviewed journals or conferences. (E)
  • Experience with ethnographic and research-in-the-wild methodologies. (D)
  • Technical experience related to the design of digital musical instruments, music production software, music programming languages, or similar technologies. (D)
  • Musical experience as a performer, composer or improviser. (D)
  • Knowledge of recent research literature in digital musical instrument design and human-computer interaction (HCI), including third-wave HCI and research through design (RtD). (D)
  • Experience working as part of a multidisciplinary team. (D)

Further information

Further Information

This is a full-time, fixed-term position for 24 months. Part-time options and extensions to 36 months can be considered.

For informal enquiries about the post please contact Monika Delczyk at m.delczyk@imperial.ac.uk.

For technical issues when applying online, please contact support.jobs@imperial.ac.uk.

Interview date: w/c 19th December 2022

Interview format: in person; online interviews will be considered for overseas candidates

Planned start date: 1st February 2023, or as soon as possible thereafter. 


In your application, please refer to Professorpositions.com

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