Research Departments

Center for Artistic Research in Jazz and Popular Music Vienna

The focus of the Center for Artistic Research in Jazz and Popular Music Vienna (CAR) is on gaining knowledge in and through artistic practice. The diversity within popular music is taken into account and studied from the perspective of all those who are involved in the various creative processes. The aim is to develop theoretical perspectives on the basis of an interdisciplinary and participatory research approach.

The CAR sees itself as a complement to existing institutions, such as the Orpheus Research Center in Music (ORCiM) in Ghent/Belgium, and expands its orientation as an international centre of excellence for artistic music research to include the field of jazz and popular music - which is little represented at ORCiM but is all the more relevant for contemporary culture.

CAR is oriented towards basic artistic research based on a growing international network of artistic researchers ( High-quality research is carried out by excellent local artistic researchers and international project partners and in cooperation with other renowned music universities in Austria. The team consists of experts at senior, doctoral and master level and is characterized by cooperation with representatives of internationally leading partner institutions and networks in the fields of artistic research, jazz and popular music research and musicology.

The linking of artistic research with music education is of particular importance to the CAR and takes place at all levels of music education, including the music school, the conservatoire as well as the tertiary sector at JMLU. All activities of the CAR are guided by the principles of the Austrian University Act regarding the connection of research, art and teaching.

A catalogue of outreach measures serves to communicate research results; these include publications by means of JMLU's own publishing activities in the print, recording and online sectors, the organization of knowledge transfer projects such as symposia, workshops and competitions, as well as JMLU's Artist-In-Residence Program. At the same time, the existing connection to a large group of stakeholders in the current scenes of popular music (music makers, producers, promoters, media and audience) serves to develop an inclusive approach to artistic research, using, among other things, innovative concepts of open scientific work (Citizen Science).

The CAR officially started its work with the kick off event on June 15, 2022 at the Spielraum of the Gasometer Vienna. The current local connection to the JMLU is ideal for describing the music country Austria as a prototypical development space for contemporary music cultures. There are numerous collaborations with stakeholders in the cultural scene such as the RSO Vienna, Radio Superfly, Ö1, the Jazzfest Wien and internationally renowned partners such as Jeff Levenson (Thelonious Monk Institute), Larry Applebaum and Bill Dobbins (Rutgers University) and John Edward Hasse (Smithsonian).

Head of Institute: Mag. Marcus Ratka 
Scientific Management
Michael Kahr, PhD

sponsored by:

Logo Stadt Wien 


Research Institute for Music Medicine

In May 2022, the JAM MUSIC LAB Private University for Jazz and Popular Music Vienna founded the first research institute for music medicine in Austria with a focus on "Arts for Health".

The aim of the research is on how music can be used to prevent medical problems or to support in the case of dementia or long covid for example, by professional musicians performing music directly to the clients or by playing music together with the clients.

The heads of the new institute are Klaus-Felix Laczika and Oliver Peter Graber. Klaus-Felix Laczika is an internationally renowned researcher in the field of music medicine and an intensive care physician. Oliver Peter Graber is a musician and music-theorist with a focus on composition/music & the brain.

Music medicine literally understands music as “medicine”. “Arts for Health” focuses on prevention of illnesses and direct contact between artists and clients. As an example of the activities the artists and clients play music together.

For the first time the focus will be particularly on research and training on creative work with the clients.

The still young subject area of "Arts for Health" is also intended to open up new professional perspectives for musicians and artists: In an interdisciplinary course "Digital Arts for Health" (1 semester, total costs EUR 980) for musicians, dancers, artists, teachers, doctors and therapeutic personnel, nursing staff, caregivers, social workers as well as artistically and interdisciplinary interested persons, the creative making of music together with affected persons and the development of specially required music programs and exercises for each field of application or clinical picture will be taught, thus opening up rewarding fields of work for the future. 

As part of the curriculum, the students acquire knowledge of the elementary "interplay" of music and body, basic design principles in the arts such as their targeted application in the context of Arts for Health projects, as well as the aspects of ethics, mindfulness and organization that are particularly important for musicians.

We would be happy to provide you with detailed information about the Digital Arts for Health course. Please contact us at artsforhealth[at]

Bechstein Stiftung