Conference visit Eurosonic Noorderslag 2023

After two years of online editions, the European music business conference and showcase festival Eurosonic Noorderslag, was “live” again in Groningen. Lab lead Koos Zwaan, who is also associate professor of Innovation in the International Music Industry at Inholland, attended the conference and was also a speaker and panel member.  
On Friday, he presented the preliminary results of a project that Inholland/IMI Lab is conducting together with the Popcoalitie and Being a Designer. The goal of this project is to formulate a research and innovation agenda for and with the Dutch music sector. The Popcoalitie is an organization that represents the full value chain of the music industry, including many companies, organizations and industry associations. With a large group of members of the Popcoalitie, themes and issues were explored and a “version 1.0” of that agenda was formulated. In Groningen, Koos presented this first version to a full house of industry professionals.  Later this year the final version will be presented and will also become available online. And it’s not just about describing the problems and questions! We want to form consortia of practitioners and researchers to start projects to implement this agenda.

The next day, Koos also was one of the panel members in a discussion about the connection between education and the professional field. Other panel members included Willem Westermann, who spoke on behalf of the Union of Event Organizers, Noud van der Rhee, who is looking into labour market issues and solutions on behalf of the Platform ACCT (labour market cultural and creative future), Nynke Stellingsma who is the director of SPOT Groningen, the theater and concert organization in Groningen and she is also the founder of CrossWise, a working and learning cooperation program between different professional education institutions SPOT and the Municipality of Groningen, and Marlies Timmermans, the director of EKKO in Utrecht, the place in Utrecht for emerging, innovative and relevant pop and club music, which is also a learning environment for music industry professionals and breeding ground for musical talent. Within this panel it was discussed that there is a gap in the transition from education to professional field, but the various panel members also gave examples of good practices how to bridge this gap. The IMI Lab, with its strong connection to the international music industry, was discussed as an example to let the professional field, education and research come together to create a meaningful learning environment for aspiring music industry professionals.