Brief Bio

  October 29, 2012



 Photo: Artie Limmer






Cynthia M. Grund contemplated a career as a professional accompanist (piano) before deciding to embark upon an academic career which has included mathematics, logic, formal philosophy, aesthetics and culture studies. Grund received her training in the United States (BA, Bryn Mawr College), Sweden (ABD, Uppsala U.) and Finland (FT/fil.dr., U. of Tampere). She defended her Finnish doctoral thesis Constitutive Counterfactuality: The Logic of Interpretation in Metaphor and Music (Copenhagen: Askeladden) in 1997. She is an Associate Professor of Philosophy in the Institute for the Study of Culture (IKV) at The University of Southern Denmark (SDU) – Odense, and in 2006  was named Research Director (forskningsleder) for The Aesthetics of Music and Sound – Cross-Disciplinary Interplay between the Humanities, Technology and Musical Practice,  In 2007 Grund founded the NordPlus-supported Nordic Network for the Integration of Music Informatics, Performance and Aesthetics, NNIMIPA; On June 30, 2010 it was announced that NNIMIPA had been awarded a NordForsk grant of 571,239 Norwegian kroner (ca. 535,000 Danish kroner/88,000 US dollars).  NNIMIPA thus became a research network under NordForsk September 1, 2010 - August 1, 2013 with Grund as project leader. Grund was chief applicant for NTSMB: Netværk for Tværvidenskabelige Studier af Musik og Betydning/ Network for Cross-Disciplinary Studies of Music and Meaning, which was started in 2001 with a grant from the Danish Council for Independent Research|Humanities (DCIRH) and has been its director since; the actitivities which took place under the aegis of NTSMB 2001-2010 now have largely been subsumed by the activities of The Aesthetics of Music and Sound, NNIMIPA and JMM (see below). She also is a founder and the Editor-in-Chief of the DCIRH-supported JMM: Journal of Music and Meaning  In September 2010 Grund was appointed a member of the advisory board of the Music and Philosophy Study Group of The Royal Musical Association (GB)


Since joining the philosophy faculty of SDU in 1999, Grund has been responsible for the development and teaching of courses in logic as well as theory of argumentation within the philosophy program. Interested in the ways in which aspects of the immaterialist philosophy of Irish philosopher George Berkeley (1685-1753) might have relevance for some issues of logic and ontology with regard to topics involving perception and virtual reality (VR), during the month of July 2007 Grund was Scholar in Residence at Whitehall, Berkeleys American home from 1729-1731 in Middletown, Rhode Island. She returned in this capacity in July 2008 after presenting the paper "Berkeley on Perception, Vision and Second Life" at the International Berkeley Conference in Newport, R.I., June 26-28, 2008 and served as Scholar in Residence at Whitehall once again August 13-30, 2009.


Grund submitted a successful application to bring William Westney (Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Piano and Browning Artist-in-Residence School of Music, Texas Tech University) to The University of Southern Denmark as H.C. Andersen Visiting Professorial Fellow during the 2009-2010 academic year and was faculty contact person for Westney during this period. Grund and Westney are currently engaged in extensive cooperative research.  Their work explores the ways in which issues raised by music pedagogy and the practice of music, in particular concert piano performance, are informed by philosophy and vice versa; see and  Grund and Westney gave a paper - "Embodying Music: Susanne K. Langer’s Ideas of ‘Living Form’ and Martin Buber's Notion of verwirklichen as These Apply to Group Exercises in a Classical-Music Workshop" at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the American Society for Aesthetics (ASA) in Victoria, Canada, October 27-30, 2010 and  delivered the paper - "A Discourse Addressing the Themes of Beauty, Utility and Experimental Aesthetics in Broadly Humean Terms" at the 2011 Annual Meeting of the ASA in Tampa, Florida, October 36-29, 2011. July 2, 2011 Grund and Westney gave a presentation entitled "Pathways to Authenticity in Operatic Interpretation" at the Inaugural Conference of the Royal Musical Association's Music and Philosophy Study Group, Dept. of Music, King’s College London, 1 &2 July 2011 and during the fall of 2011, Grund and Westney also gave joint presentations  at Texas Tech University, University of Texas (Austin), and University of Southern Denmark at Odense.  As of January 2012, Grund is a member of a team led by Westney at TTU to carry out the project Technological and Aesthetic Investigation of the Physical Movements of Pianists within the newly-founded Transdisciplinary Research Academy (TRA) at TTU and, along with Westney, is working together with Dr.Michael W. O'Boyle - Ph.D.; Assistant Director, Texas Tech Neuroimaging Inst.; Assoc. Dean for Research, College of Human Sciences: Prof., Dept. of Human Development and Family Studies Texas TTU; Prof. of Pharmacology and Neuroscience, School of Medicine, TTU Health Sciences Center; and Dr. Jingzhou (James) Yang, Assistant Prof. and Director of Human-Centric Design Research Lab, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering, TTU. For a presentation of the team as well as "Musical Movements and Meanings", video film and explanatory text published on YouTube on 31/07/2012 by TTUAcademicsResearch to document the beginning of the research project, please see


During the later part of 2012, Grund and Westney gave a presentation entitled "What’s so Mysterious about the Ineffable?" at the NMIMIPA Network Meeting July 22, 2012, King's College London on the occasion of the second annual conference of the RMA-MPSG (Royal Musical Association Music and Philosophy Study Group) held at King’s College London on July 20-21, 2012 and on October 25, 2012 they presented a paper entitled “From Music to Sport and Back Again: A Continuum Hypothesis” at the 70th Annual Meeting of The American Society for Aesthetics, St. Louis, Missouri, USA, During October 2012, Grund also worked on site with the resident TTU-TRA team in Lubbock, Texas on the project Technological and Aesthetic Investigation of the Physical Movements of Pianists. For a documentary photo essay, please see   



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