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Home / Member / Dr. Gillian Howell
Researcher, educator, and musician committed to the development of participatory music-making as a versatile and multi-dimensional community resource.

Dr Gillian Howell is the Dean’s Research Fellow in Music at the University of Melbourne where she researches the contributions of participatory music-making to building community cohesion, peace and reconciliation post-conflict. A highly-experienced community musician and community cultural development practitioner, she has worked in post-conflict development projects in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Sri Lanka and Timor-Leste, and with recently-arrived child migrants and English language-learners in Australia. She established and was the inaugural Creative Director of the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra's award-winning Community Engagement Program, 2002-2009. Currently she is the director of Tura New Music’s Fitzroy Valley New Music Program, working in the remote Aboriginal township of Fitzroy Crossing to develop collaborative music projects that strengthen connections to place and community. In 2020 this work won the Australian Art Music Award for Excellence in a Regional Area. Gillian’s research is published in leading outlets including the International Journal of Community Music, Music and Arts in Action, and multiple Oxford Handbooks, and she is a member of the review board for the International Journal of Community Music. Her PhD dissertation (completed at Griffith University) won the Callaway Doctoral Award for contributions to music education. She has been a keynote speaker in China, Australia, and Colombia, an Australian Government Endeavour Research Fellow in Sri Lanka, and a visiting scholar in Colombia and Norway.