School of Arts and Cultures

Staff Profiles

Dr Adam Behr

Lecturer in Contemporary and Pop Music


Dr Adam Behr is interested in the politics and sociology of music. 

He is a founder, and co-director of the Live Music Exchange, a knowledge exchange and research body that builds bridges between academics, industry and policymakers.

He also plays guitar and bass guitar.

Previous positions:

  • Research Associate/Module Co-Ordinator: University of Edinburgh
  • Research Associate: University of Glasgow
  • Senior Research Associate: University of East Anglia
  • Visiting Lecturer: City University, London
  • Teaching Fellow: University of Stirling


My research covers the politics and sociology of music, particularly popular music, and the music industries. Research topics to date have included:

  • The cultural value of live music
  • Digitisation, copyright and musical practice
  • The relationships between venues, musicians and policymakers
  • The social dynamics of rock bands
  • The conventions of performance at open mic nights

My work also involves engagement with industry and government, at local, regional and national levels.

Current research projects include:

Director: Live Music Exchange (

Member of the City of Edinburgh Council 'Music is Audible' working group

Member: International Association for the Study of Popular Music

Member: Royal Musical Association

Current research includes a UK Live Music Census, with industry and policy partners. You can read more about this at: 



Module Leader: MUS1014 - Introduction to the Study of Contemporary and Popular Music

Module Leader: MUS3029 – Music, Politics and Policy

Contributor: MUS2065 - Issues in Popular Music Culture


Co-ordinator for MMus Elective Option: Popular Music Policy - Case Studies and Context

Co-ordinator for MMus Elective Option: Advanced Popular Music Studies

Contributor to Music Masters Research Training

Currently supervising PhDs on:

  • Embodied knowledge and the songwriting process
  • The interface of contemporary music publishing and performance scenes with local policy
  • Borrowed stories and narrative in the work of Kate Bush

Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy