Neil Thomas Smith, et al.

Published On


Page Range

pp. 59–80


  • English

Print Length

22 pages

3. Roundtable 2: Documenting Change

The Role of Best-Practice Guidelines

  • Neil Thomas Smith (author)
  • Hannah Bujic (contributions by)
  • Francine Gorman (contributions by)
  • Fiona Robertson (contributions by)
This chapter considers three recent sets of best-practice guidelines that address urgent areas requiring change within the UK classical music sector and beyond: the way that organisations work with composers; the representation of women at all levels of the music industry; and the way organisations work with neurodiverse artists and participants. Each document seeks to crystallise practical steps that organisations can take to begin bringing about change in these areas. At the same time, the documents themselves become vital parts of the efforts to make change happen. The authors describe both the contents and the goals of their documents, as well as the way in which they were created. The aim is to provide a practical insight for people who may wish to create or use such guidelines, but also to critically assess the role of such documents in processes of change


Neil Thomas Smith


Neil Thomas Smith is a researcher and composer, teaching at the University of Edinburgh and the Open College of the Arts. Between 2018 and 2022 he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Maastricht Centre for the Innovation of Classical Music, where his research focussed on orchestras’ attempts at spatial innovation, both inside the concert hall and beyond. Neil has also worked on German contemporary music and sociological examinations of ‘emerging’ composers, with articles appearing in journals including Music & Letters, Cultural Sociology, Contemporary Music Review, the Journal of the Royal Musical Association, Tempo, and the British Journal of Sociology. His first monograph, a critical companion to the composer Mathias Spahlinger, was published in 2021; while a debut disc of chamber music, Stop Motion Music, was released in 2023.

Hannah Bujic

(contributions by)

Francine Gorman

(contributions by)

Fiona Robertson

(contributions by)