Development & Alumni Relations Office 


28 July 2016

The Senator George J Mitchell Institute at Queen’s has secured an £800,000 research award to explore how sound and music underpin activism and political agendas.

The grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council is one of the largest ever to be awarded to the University’s Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences.

The Senator George J Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice will lead the study into the role of sound, music and digital media in conflict and post-conflict regions around the world, bringing together an interdisciplinary team of researchers from Anthropology, Music, English and Politics at Queen’s.

Scheduled to start on 1 January 2017, the project will focus on the Middle East, Brazil and Northern Ireland. It will examine how communities that have experienced conflict respond to processes of musical activism, participatory music making, sonic arts and dramatised performances of resistance and reconciliation. Each case study will contribute to a final sound-art installation and exhibition, showcased in Derry and Rio de Janeiro.

Institute Director, Professor Hastings Donnan FBA said: “This substantial award enables the Institute to address the challenge of understanding and transforming conflict in innovative and exciting ways. It offers clear evidence that by bringing the University’s international and disciplinary expertise together, the Institute opens up new lines of research inquiry that set the research agenda for the study of conflict and peace-building.”

Project lead investigator, Professor Fiona Magowan said: “Sound is an often unacknowledged element of conflict and conflict transformation. This project will redress this omission not only by incorporating sound as a central aspect of academic analysis but by exploring the impact of sound on the public through dramatic performances and sound installations.”

The Senator George J Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice is the second of four Global Research Institutes to be launched by the University Global Research Institutes are the University’s flagships for interdisciplinary research in areas of major societal challenge.

Click the link for further information on The Senator George J Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice.

Media inquiries to Queen’s Communications Office or tel: 028 9097 3091. 


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