Call for Papers

Approaches welcomes submissions that fall within and around the field of music therapy with a particular intrest in interdisciplinary dialogues. A range of papers – written in English and/or in Greek – are invited, including: theoretical papers, research and evaluation articles, practice-based papers and project reports. Approaches accepts submissions throughout the year.

For submission guidelines, click here.

To submit your paper or if you are interested in submitting an interview, a book review or a conference report, please email Co-Editor-in-Chief Giorgos Tsiris.

Special issues

Call for Papers – Special issue on ‘Ethical Questions in Transforming Music Practices’

Abstracts submission deadline: 1st May 2023.
Click here to download a pdf copy of the Call for Papers.


Sanna Kivijärvi, Sibelius Academy, University of the Arts Helsinki & Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences, Finland

Taru Koivisto, Center for Educational Research and Academic Development in the Arts, University of the Arts Helsinki, Finland


Rapidly changing and digitising societies challenge the ways ethical questions are approached and solved in working life. This applies to music-related professions, such as music education and therapy, where individual practitioners often have wide agency and autonomy, including ethical reasoning and reflection (see Hoover, 2021; Westerlund & Gaunt, 2021; Weymann & Stegemann, 2016). Ethical decision-making requires understanding of institutional and procedural professional ethics, but also capacity for virtue ethics; referring to critical thinking and self-reflection in diverse contexts (see Subramani, 2021; VIRT2UE, 2021). In connection to organisational ethics, for example interdisciplinary views into situational (e.g., Allsup & Westerlund, 2012) or reflexive ethics (e.g., Ruud, 2010) in music practitioners` work may be investigated.

Ethical challenges are often multilayered and involve intersections between systemic and micro-levels of music practices. We suggest that reflection of human behaviour, relationships, and sociocultural norms through ethical dilemmas may create a momentum for individual and social development and wellbeing. However, too many changing stressors or complex ethical challenges may lead to inadequate emotional coping, ethical stress, or moral distress (e.g., Morley et al., 2019; Ulrich & Grady, 2018) among other destructive consequences. One overlapping perspective on ethical stress is moral injury (Levinson, 2015) referring to a situation where an individual has to act against their values or moral beliefs.

With the aim of exploring ethical challenges as a source of renewal and change, we invite music practitioners, researchers, policy makers, and other interdisciplinary stakeholders to contribute to this Special Issue. Possible themes for examining music and ethics in and through music practitioners’ work may include but are not limited to: ethics in relation to self-care, resilience, or other psychological views; ethical sustainability; embodied and tacit knowledge; informing ethically sound practice; ethical decision-making and leadership; client-centred and people-centred views into ethical reasoning; organisational and educational ethics; and digital ethics.

Ethical dilemmas and reflection may be inquired for example through empirical research, autoethnographies, case examples and vignettes, or theoretical and philosophical approaches. We also invite authors to reflect on the topic through other relevant contributions, such as interviews, artistic responses, book reviews, and conference reports. Authors are welcome to build a shared and open space for interdisciplinary ethical discussions. We welcome critical contemplations, which add to the ethical, cross-cultural and social justice discussions in the field.

Building on these directions, we invite authors to explore the aforementioned topics and related issues in an open, interdisciplinary forum of scholars and practitioners. A wide range of practical approaches, exemplary cases and interprofessional entanglements are required to foster pluralistic understandings of ethics in and through music practices.

Key dates

  • Please submit your abstract (max. 250 words) to Sanna Kivijärvi by May 1, 2023.
  • The authors will be notified of their abstract acceptance by May 15, 2023.
  • Full-text submissions due by October 31, 2023.
  • The Special Issue will be published in Spring 2024.


Allsup, R. E., & Westerlund, H. (2012). Methods and situational ethics in music education. Action, Criticism, and Theory for Music Education, 11(1), 124–148.

Hoover, S. A. (2021). Music as care: Artistry in the hospital environment. Routledge.

Levinson, M. (2015). Moral injury and the ethics of educational injustice. Harvard Educational Review, 85(2), 203–228.

Morley, G., Ives, J., Bradbury-Jones, C., & Irvine, F. (2019). What is ‘moral distress’? A narrative synthesis of the literature. Nursing Ethics, 26(3), 646–662.

Ruud, E. (2010). Music therapy: A perspective from the humanities. Barcelona Publishers.

Subramani, S. (2019). Practising reflexivity: Ethics, methodology and theory construction. Methodological Innovations, 12(2), 2059799119863276.

Ulrich, C. M., & Grady, C. (2018). Moral distress in the health professions. Springer.

VIRT2UE (2022, August 22). Your platform for research integrity and ethics. The Embassy of Good Science.

Westerlund, H., & Gaunt, H. (Eds.). (2021). Expanding professionalism in music and higher music education: A changing game. Routledge.

Weymann, E., & Stegemann, T. (2016). Ethics in music therapy: How to address ethical questions, and how to find ways to handle ethical dilemmas. Nordic Journal of Music Therapy, 25(sup1), 83–84.

To access the archive of past special issues, click here.
If you are interested in proposing a special issue, click here.