Call For Papers: Urban Soundscapes and Critical Citizenship

Urban Soundscapes and Critical Citizenship

27th & 28th March, 2014, Limerick, Ireland

Call for papers

In this interdisciplinary conference, we explore the intersection of soundscapes and acoustic ecology studies with urban, applied ethnomusicology’s focus on human subjects (Hemetek and Reyes 2007; Jurková 2012) and with sociological understandings of the cultural restructuring of urban space (Fainstein and Campbell, 2011; LeGates 2011; Bridge and Watson 2010), through an evocation of ‘critical citizenship’ (Nell et al, 2012).

We would particularly welcome individual papers (20 mins + 10 mins for questions) or panel presentations (90 minutes) that address the following questions:


–          Where is the individual located in urban (soundscape) studies?

–          How do the sounds of a city shape human experience?

–          What role does sound play in the cultural restructuring of urban space?

–          Might soundscape projects be part of urban regeneration and renewal and if so, in what ways?

–          How can we create/capture urban soundscapes and what motivates us to do so?

–          How might the relationship between the city and the individual be reframed sonically?

–          What critical potentials are unleashed in applied soundscape work?

–          Are soundscapes mere reflections of acoustic and other realities, or might they construct pathways for greater interaction between cities and their people?

–          What are contemporary methodological challenges in representing urban soundscapes?

–          What new technologies allow for the reimagining of applied soundscapes production and manipulation?

–          How can we productively bring together lessons from different disciplines in relation to urban, societal, cultural and acoustic ecologies in order to imagine a better, lived, urban experience?


Keynote speakers will include Dr. Ursula Hemetek, University of Vienna, and Dr. Giacomo Bottà, University of Helsinki.


Please send your individual abstract of no more than 250 words, or a panel abstract of 350 words to


We also invite five-minute recording submissions for our dedicated listening space at the event.  Please send your sound file, associated picture, and a brief description to


The deadline for receipt of individual and panel abstracts is Nov 14th.  Notifications will be sent by Nov 28th.


Programme committee:

Dr. Martin Power, Dept. of Sociology, University of Limerick.

Dr. Aileen Dillane, Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick.

Dr. Tony Langlois, Dept. of Media, Mary Immaculate College, University of Limerick.

Dr. Mikael Fernström, Interaction Design Centre and Department of Computer Science and Information Systems, University of Limerick.

Dr. Eoin. Devereux, Dept. of Sociology, University of Limerick.

Dr. Colin Quigley, Irish World Academy of Music and Dance, University of Limerick.


LimerickSoundscapes is an interdisciplinary research cluster that includes applied, urban, and media ethnomusicologists, sociologists, acousticians, and soundscapes composers, and is based at the University of Limerick and Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, Ireland.  This conference is funded by the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, and The Irish World Academy, University of Limerick.