Jan Herbst

Dr Jan Herbst

Jan-Peter Herbst is Reader in Music Production at the University of Huddersfield, UK. He is currently leading several funded projects: ‘Songwriting Camps in the 21st Century’ (AHRC, 2023-2026), ‘Heaviness in Metal Music Production’ (AHRC, 2020-2024) and ‘Extreme Metal Vocals’ (EU Horizon, 2022-2024). His work focuses on various facets of music production, industry, and performance in popular music, with a particular emphasis on rock and metal music. Contact:

Simon Barber

Dr Simon Barber

Dr Simon Barber is a Senior Research Fellow in the Birmingham Centre for Media and Cultural Research (BCMCR) at Birmingham City University. His work focuses on songwriting and the creative process, which he explores as co-lead of the BCMCR Popular Music Cluster. He leads the Songwriting Studies Research Network and is currently co-investigator on the AHRC/DFG funded project Songwriting Camps in the 21st Century. Simon is also the producer and co-presenter of the popular Sodajerker podcast, which features interviews with some of the most successful songwriters in the world. Contact:

Katherine Williams

Dr Katherine Williams

Dr Katherine Williams is a Research Fellow in Popular Music Songwriting at the University of Huddersfield. Her work focuses on popular music and jazz, with particular emphasis on singer-songwriters, gender, music and geography, and improvisation. She is currently Research Skills Officer for the Royal Musical Association. Contact:

Ingrid Tolstad

Dr Ingrid M. Tolstad

Dr Ingrid M. Tolstad is a social anthropologist and a Senior Researcher at the Work Research Institute at Oslo Metropolitan University. She holds a PhD in musicology from the University of Oslo and her dissertation was an ethnographic case study of Swedo-Russian pop musical collaborations based on music studio fieldwork. Her research experience includes investigations into quality assessments in creative and artistic practices, methodological exploration in youth participation and urban development, facilitating innovation in media organizations, and consequences of digitalization in society, arts and culture. Contact:


Prof. Dr. Michael Ahlers

Michael Ahlers is full professor for music education, in particular popular music at Leuphana University, Germany. His current research projects include studies on digital interfaces, creativity, practising and expertise, music industries in postmodern societies, gender and power relations, cultural literacies, and age(ing) in popular music. Contact:

Wolf Georg-Zaddach

Dr Wolf-Georg Zaddach

Wolf-Georg Zaddach was born in 1985 in Lübben/Spreewald (East Germany). He studied musicology, arts administration and history in Weimar and Jena, music management and jazz guitar (w/ David Doruzka) in Prague/Czech Republic. Since 2014 he holds a scholarship by the German National Academic Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes) for his work on his Ph.D. about heavy and extreme metal in the 1980s GDR/East Germany. He frequently performs live and on records as a guitarist. Contact:

Carsten Wernicke

Carsten Wernicke

Carsten Wernicke is a research assistant in the German part of the research project ‘Songwriting Camps in the 21st Century’ at Leuphana University Lüneburg. He is also a research assistant in the research project ‘Representation and Perception of Classical Musicians on YouTube’ at the University of Koblenz. Contact: