Principal Investigators

Heidi Westerlund

Heidi Westerlund is a professor at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland, where she is also responsible for the music education doctoral studies. She has published widely in international journals and books and she is the co-editor of Collaborative learning in higher music education (Ashgate) as well as the Editor-in-chief of the Finnish Journal of Music Education. Her research interests include higher arts education, music teacher education, collaborative learning, cultural diversity and democracy in music education. She is currently co-editing Perspectives on Music, Education and Religion: A Critical Inquiry (Indiana University Press) and Visions for Intercultural Music Teacher Education as well as leading two research projects funded by the Academy of Finland: The Arts as Public Service: Strategic Steps Towards Equality (2015–2020) and Global Visions Through Mobilizing Networks: Co-Developing Intercultural Music Teacher Education in Finland, Israel and Nepal (2015–2019).

Sidsel Karlsen

Sidsel Karlsen works as a professor of music education and general education at Hedmark University of Applied Sciences in Norway and is a docent at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland. Sidsel’s research interests concern the many ways of learning and teaching music that exist in today’s society, and she is also deeply committed to exploring how social and cultural diversities intersect with our opportunities for partaking in music education. She is currently involved in two research projects, Global Visions Through Mobilizing Networks: Co-Developing Intercultural Music Teacher Education in Finland, Israel and Nepal (funded by the Academy of Finland) and Musical Gentrification and Socio-Cultural Diversities (funded by the Research Council Norway), and she publishes frequently in international research journals, anthologies and handbooks. Before deciding to pursue an academic career, Sidsel worked as a singer, singing teacher and choral conductor for more than a decade. Nowadays, her contributions to music education as an educator come mostly through teaching and supervising at the master’s and doctoral programmes of institutions for higher music education in Norway and Finland.

Researchers from the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy

Heidi Partti

Dr Heidi Partti is a music education researcher and writer. She works as a Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland. Heidi’s research interests revolve around phenomena related to learning and teaching music in rapidly changing and diverse sociocultural environments, and, in particular, to questions related to diversity, digital media, cultural pluralism, and intercultural interaction in music teacher education. She has been the first author in several scientific articles published in internationally recognized journals and peer-reviewed books and handbooks, and serves as a review reader in journals of music education and education. In addition to her research work, she actively contributes to Finnish music teacher education by teaching and supervising music education students writing their masters and doctoral theses at the Sibelius Academy. Heidi is currently involved in two research projects: The Arts as Public Service: Strategic Steps Towards Equality and Global Visions Through Mobilizing Networks: Co-Developing Intercultural Music Teacher Education in Finland, Israel and Nepal.

Alexis Kallio

Alexis Anja Kallio is a post doctoral research fellow in the Faculty of Music Education, Jazz, and Folk Music at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland. Alexis is drawn to the multiplicity of experiences, values, and perspectives in the everyday practices of teaching and learning. With a background in music education and cultural criminology, her interdisciplinary research takes a closer look at the taken-for-granted, attending to the processes of legitimation and exclusion in different education and cultural contexts. She has more than a decade of experience as a studio piano teacher, a secondary school music teacher and musician.

Laura Miettinen

Laura Miettinen is a doctoral candidate in music education at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland. She holds master’s degrees in music education (Sibelius Academy) and in sociology (University of Birmingham, UK). In her doctoral dissertation, Laura examines music educators’ intercultural competences and identity formation in two music teacher education programmes in Finland and Israel. Her research interests include intercultural education and interaction, cultural diversity in music education and educational psychology. In addition to her academic career, Laura has also worked as a freelance singer, singing teacher, vocal coach and choir conductor.

Vilma Timonen

Vilma Timonen is a lecturer in folk music at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland where she graduated as Master of Music in 2004. Vilma's instrument is the kantele, one of the traditional instruments of Finland. She has been a pioneer in promoting the kantele both in various pedagogical and artistic settings. Her expertise lies in teacher education. Her expertise bringing pedagogy that is based on traditional music to classroom teachers and instrumental teachers, and educating students at the Sibelius Academy for more than a decade, has developed her perspective on creating pedagogical approaches that renew the tradition by bringing it to new contexts, and make the tradition live in the hands of contemporary artists and teachers via various forms of improvisation. Vilma Timonen has been working closely with the new Global Music Master Programme (GLOMAS) in the Sibelius Academy, and has further developed the pedagogical approaches in global directions. Vilma's research in Nepal focusses on finding pedagogical solutions most appropriate to music teacher education in the Nepalese context together with music educators from both Finland and Nepal.

Danielle Treacy

Danielle Treacy is a doctoral candidate in music education at the University of the Arts Helsinki, Sibelius Academy in Finland. She completed a Bachelor of Music (Music Education) from the University of Toronto in 2002, a Bachelor of Education from Queen's University (Canada) in 2003, and a Master of Arts (Education) from the University of Jyväskylä in the Programme in Development and International Cooperation in 2010. Danielle has lived in Toronto, Canada; Cairo, Egypt; Nairobi, Kenya; Singapore; and Helsinki, Finland; and has worked as an elementary school music teacher, instrumental teacher, classroom teacher and English as an Additional Language teacher. Danielle’s research interests include themes of music education in the ‘majority world’ (developing countries) and the complexities of diversity in music education.


Researchers from the Levinsky College of Education

Claudia Gluschankof

Claudia Gluschankof is Senior Lecturer at Levinsky College of Education, Tel-Aviv, where besides her teaching at the pregraduate and graduate levels at the Early Childhood Department and Music Department, she served as researcher at the R & D Authority and as Coordinator of Studies at the School of Music (2002-2008). She holds a PhD from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, an MA in Music Education from the University of London – Institute of Education, an Orff certificate (Orff Institute, Salzburg) and a Kodály certificate (Kodály Institute, Kecskemét). In addition to her teaching activity at the kindergarten level and in teacher pre-service and in-service training, she served as a member of and as head researcher for the Music Curriculum Committee of Israel. As the academic advisor at Beit Almusica Conservatory (Shfr-Amr, Israel), she is member of the team that develops new materials for Arab speaking young children and preschool teachers. She served at the ISME - ECME commission (2006–2012, chairing 2008–2010). Her research interests focus on the musical expressions of young children, particularly on the self-initiated play of young children in various cultural contexts, especially among Hebrew and Arab speakers. Dr. Claudia Gluschankof has presented her research at many international conferences, and her research has been published in various peer reviewed journals and edited books.

Amira Ehrlich

Amira is a DMA candidate in Music Education at Boston University, writing her dissertation on Cultural Aspects of Contemporary Jewish Israeli Music Educators. Amira has an M.Ed in Music Education from the Levinsky College of Education, Tel Aviv, and a B.A. and M.A. in English Literature and Musicology from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Amira teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in music, music education, action research, and educational leadership at the Levinsky College; and teaches educational and community leadership and entrepreneurship at the Schechter Institute for Jewish Studies. In 2009, Amira founded her own production company for the management and advancement of Innovative Jewish Music ensembles. Between 2009 and 2015, Amira worked as the Jerusalem District Director of the Department of Educational Innovation in the Israel Ministry of Education. Today, Amira works as an academic director in the Ultra Orthodox Women's Leadership program at Mandel Institute for Educational Leadership. Born and raised in the USA, Amira resides near Jerusalem, Israel with her husband and three daughters.

Researcher from the Nepal Music Center

Iman Shah

Project Partners

Belal Badarne
Prem Gurung
Rachel Katzir
Albi Odendaal

Albi Odendaal is a lecturer in music education at the North-West University in South Africa. He also holds a position as a postdoctoral researcher as part of the ArtsEqual project at the Sibelius Academy of the University of the Arts Helsinki, where he also completed his doctoral training. He has previously held postdoctoral fellowships at the University of Cape Town and the University of Stellenbosch. His research interests include psychology of music, educational psychology, doctoral education, and music teacher education, and he has published in Psychology of Music, Research Studies in Music Education, Music Education Research, Ethnomusicology Forum, Innovations in Education and Training International, and the Finnish Journal of Music Education.

The School of Music & Conservatory at North-West University offers exceptional music instruction in a variety of instruments and genres. Our programmes offer students the opportunity to engage in music performance, music education, musicology, research, composition and music technology. The School of Music hosts the research niche Musical Arts in South Africa: Resources and Applications, a unique entity in South Africa, which conducts focused research on music and wellbeing from a wide cross-diciplinary perspective. The research niche hosts researchers who specialise in diverse music disciplines such as musicology, ethnomusicology, music education, religious music, composition and performance who are working together symbiotically within the collective focus area of music and wellbeing. The research that results from this combined focus contributes to the enhancement of various contexts, such as music teaching and learning, music in everyday life, music in communities, as well as music in religious contexts.

Naomi Perl