Department of Music Sociology

The Department of Music Sociology at the mdw - University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna was founded in 1965 at the initiative of Kurt Blaukopf and sees its task as the historically aware, topical and forward-looking scientific development of sociological knowledge of the arts.


In the Austrian tradition of empirical research in arts and culture, the department is committed to the following principles:


  • The close connection between research and teaching

  • Maintaining a close relationship with artistic practice

  • An interdisciplinary approach to work

  • Enhancement of the theoretical and socio-political relevance of its research

  • International cooperation


In the context of research, the department is committed to observing and documenting current developments in musical life and to analysing and assessing them against the background of historical developments. In view of the rapid technological, economic, legal and cultural-policy changes that musical life is currently subject to (digital mediamorphosis), this represents a considerable scientific challenge. The department’s main research tasks include the analysis of the cultural labour market (above all the music labour market), reception research, the investigation of gender-specific aspects of music production and reception, and the analysis of media, culture, and music policy.

In the context of teaching the focus is on conveying and deepening current scientific knowledge for musical-artistic and music-teaching practice. Students are provided not only with basic knowledge but also with research skills, with the aim of bringing art and science closer together. The mentoring of PhD work in the subjects of the music sociology, cultural sociology and cultural institution studies is possible at the Department of Music Sociology.


Department Head: Prof. Dr. Rosa Reitsamer
Deputy Head: Associate Prof. Dr. Michael Huber

Anton-von-Webern-Platz 1  
A-1030 Vienna, Austria   
T +43 1 71155-3601