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Sustainability - Heritage - Technology - Education

Our special world, individual or collective, is far from simple - it is rather difficult in its holistic diverse complexity. The unproblematic availability of resources has created a deluge of apparent easiness and distressing passiveness. Life changes of all shapes and modes have been faster than ever thought possible, creating abysses in a fragmented society. We propose a pause, to think and to share concerns and to find solutions for the sake of sustainability in its multi-forms - directing our attention to musical instruments and music making.


Among the variety of relevant organological issues that are being currently the object of study of scholars (organologists, engineers, musicologists, etc.), makers, collectors, museologists and musicians (both teachers and students), we add some suggestions of topics for reflection:

-The making of the known and the unknown – how archaeology and musicology have contributed to the understanding of the development of musical instruments and their use in society.

-Watching the present: how can tradition and novelty in sound production be used to help us in our music world? And how is the current general society being involved?

-Evolving technologies for virtual instrument (for example, electronics), and for making products (both new and reproductions), including with 3D drawing and printing.

-The point of building bridges to antiquity and to sound tools that are less common, and the process of experimentation in musical language and its sound world.

-Open access and society: 1) a forward-leaning approach to musical didactics focused on the characteristics of individual musical instruments; 2) document, image and sound digitization, and the object– about music and instruments in museums, libraries-archives, and private collections.

-Fostering international collaboration projects between organology and other areas of research, namely ethnomusicology, archaeology, mechanical engineering, medicine...

-An examination of the best methodologies for the improvement of the musician’s posture in dealing with the musical instrument played. How did, and still do, inventors and makers help in the ergonomic characteristics of sound tools?

-«Better to play than to hear…» reflected amusingly Dr Jean Louchet one day. Some music is not so interesting to listen to in a concert but it is great for the pleasure of just playing, namely with friends in an ensemble – that is, that is, the very act of music creation is analysed from the viewpoints of both the organologist, musician, and musicologist.

-Treasure hunting: in search of lost instruments and lost cultures.

-Gender strategies: the possible and impossible for women in music instrument making and in performance.

-Impartiality and inclusiveness: the different perspectives of less favoured and disabled people towards organology and music.

-Ethics in Organology: topics may include the secrets of the ‘know-how’, brand imitations and law protection, museum’s rights and obligations, ‘to play or not to play’, and the import/export of ivory, Dalbergia, and other materials used in the construction of musical instruments.

Call for Papers | Propostas ...

closed | encerrado o período para propostas



Given our extraordinary research area, we are very fortunate to be able to encourage practical demonstrations - we are indeed honoured and thankful to the generous offers of recitals, concerts and impromptus by the great musicians who have so much contributed to the natural involvement of our “always unique” meetings.


For the OC2017, we gratefully acknowledge our gracious hosts, the ‘Fundação Maria Isabel Guerra Junqueiro e Luís Pinto de Mesquita Carvalho’ and the Municipality of Porto, and the generous financial contributions from Dr Eng Giulio Salvadori and the Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia, Portugal, as well as all our other partners and supporters.

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