Mentoring program


The WiMIR mentoring program connects women students, postdocs, early-stage researchers, industry employees, and faculty to more senior women and men in MIR who are dedicated to increasing opportunities for women in the field. Mentors share their experiences and offer guidance to support mentees in achieving and exceeding their goals and aspirations. By connecting individuals of different backgrounds and expertise, this program strengthens networks within the MIR community, both in academia and industry.

The pilot program run in 2016 (March-June) with three remote sessions between mentor and mentee. We discussed the outcomes of this pilot and planned further mentoring rounds and activities at the WiMIR session at ISMIR 2016. Please find here more detailed information on the 2016 program.

The second edition of the program run from January to June 2017 with four remote sessions between mentor and mentee. Participant numbers have more than doubled since the pilot program, with around 50 mentees and mentors in 2017. Please find here the slides presented at ISMIR 2017 about the second edition, and a detailed feedback report.

The third edition of the program runs from January to June 2018, with nearly 80 mentee-mentor pairs.

Mentoring is a two-way street. You get out what you put in. (Steve Washington)


Mentees about the program

“This program encourages us, and helps broadening the MIR network.”

“Having an exchange with people strongly involved in MIR is a great help for someone like me who is starting in the field and is full of doubts.”

“This is a great opportunity to connect with others more established in the field.”

“It is great to get an outsider perspective on your career and opportunities.”

“… enriching experience to receive a different point of view on things that are an important part of my life.”

“It’s a great program. And congratulations to all the organizers for the success of the program.”

“The WiMIR mentoring program was truly a great experience. My mentor holds an important job at a leading MIR-related company, and I look up to him in many ways for that. It was amazing to be matched with someone with similar academia and industry interests as mine, as I felt I could ask them about nearly anything! The advice that he gave me about choosing a summer internship was very helpful and I’m confident that I made the right choice because of him.”

“The gender disproportionality somehow to me brings fear of not choosing a secure career option. The mentorship program has been a confidence booster to me.”

“The WiMIR mentoring program clearly helps to create a better network among the members of the field, because it introduces people that otherwise would probably have never met.”

“It is encouraging to see so many senior members of the MIR community actively promoting diversity by volunteering to be WiMIR mentors.”

“I saw possibilities and perspectives of people who ‘know better’ about that world in which I’m moving towards to but not quite there.”

“I have a new contact in the field. It helped me cope with some insecurities and doubts about the career decisions I had to make this year.”

“It is a wonderful program. To me, it turned out to be a blessing.”

Blog post by mentee Iris Yuping Ren on her personal experience after signing up for the program.

Blog post by mentee Magdalena Fuentes on the role of the program for her transitioning from Uruguay to Paris and starting a PhD in MIR.

Blog post by mentee Stefanie Acevedo on the role of cross-disciplinary mentorship.

Mentors about the program

“It gave me a better understanding of challenges faced by women like my mentee. Very rewarding.”

“I definitely felt good about being actively involved in something that had such a clear positive motivation.”

“WiMIR breaks barriers between generations!”

“I was very much surprised by how much I took away from our conversations; I hope that my mentee also benefitted!”

“Our talks have re-energized my research and given me a new direction to take on an upcoming research project.”

“It has helped me develop a much broader perspective on gender issues and challenges in academia.”

“I felt like my mentee was a younger version of myself and I gave the guidance I wish I had when I started being part of the field.”

“I got to know brilliant people whom I wouldn’t have a chance to know otherwise.”

“This is not only a great way to contribute to the community, but an enriching experience that can help you become a better mentor, whether in academia or industry.”

“There are few things during my academic work day that take less time and has such immediate and longer-term impacts.”

“It was exciting to me to see my mentee being eager to proudly tell me about new accomplishments and insights and me being proud on these accomplishments as well. I got the feeling that I may have had a positive impact on the mentee and that both sides actually likewise benefited from the mentoring program.”

Blog post by mentor Ryan Groves on getting to know gender issues faced by women in the work place.


The WiMIR-mentoring program has been developed with material from mentoring programmes at Utrecht University and Stanford University. We thank both universities for sharing their material and for allowing us to share it with other initiatives, such as the new mentoring programme for female engineering students at Universitat Pompeu Fabra. Please refer to this website when you reuse material, and inform us such that we can refer to your initiative on the WiMIR website.


2017 edition

Mentoring Program Committee

  • Emilia Gómez, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
  • Blair Kaneshiro, Stanford University, US
  • Anja Volk, Utrecht University, the Netherlands

Our 50 mentees reside in Australia, China, France, Hong Kong, India, the Netherlands, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, UK, US. They range from high school student to associate professor, and represent a diverse field of interests and backgrounds, such as machine learning, digital signal processing, computer music, computer science, music theory, computational musicology, music psychology, music performance, music and mathematics,  music perception and cognition, computational ethnomusicology, composition, computational neuroscience, digital media, information science and human computer interaction.

We thank our generous mentors for dedicating their time to this program:

  • Jack Atherton, CCRMA, Music Department, Stanford University, US
  • Ana M. Barbancho, Universidad de Málaga, Spain
  • Isabel Barbancho, Universidad de Malaga, Spain
  • Juan Pablo Bello, New York University, US
  • Ching-Wei Chen, Spotify, US
  • Ching-Hua Chuan, University of North Florida, USA
  • Andrea Cogliati, University of Rochester, US
  • Tom Collins, Lehigh University, US
  • Sally Jo Cunningham, Waikato University, New Zealand
  • Georgi Dzhambazov, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
  • Douglas Eck, Google Brain, US
  • Deborah Egan, DINA, UK
  • Dan Ellis, Columbia University and Google, US
  • Philippe Esling, IRCAM, France
  • Ichiro Fujinaga, McGill University, Canada
  • Mathieu Giraud, CNRS, Université de Lille, France
  • Emilia Gómez, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
  • Fabien Gouyon, Pandora, US
  • Ryan Groves, self-employed MIR Consultant, Germany
  • Dorien Herremans, Queen Mary University of London, UK
  • Xiao Hu, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • Eric Humphrey, Spotify, US
  • Berit Janssen, Meertens Insitute, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • Blair Kaneshiro, Stanford University, US
  • Thor Kell, Spotify, US
  • Katerina Kosta, Queen Mary University of London/Jukedeck, UK
  • Robin Laney, Open University, UK
  • Audrey Laplante, Université de Montréal, Canada
  • Edward Large, University of Connecticut, US
  • Jin Ha Lee, University of Washington, US
  • Alexander Lerch, Georgia Institute of Technology, US
  • David Lewis, University of Oxford, UK
  • Cynthia Liem, Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands
  • Brian McFee, New York University, US
  • David Meredith, Aalborg University, Denmark
  • Emilio Molina, BMAT, Spain
  • Meinard Mueller, International Audio Laboratories Erlangen, Germany
  • Oriol Nieto, Pandora, US
  • Dimitri Papageorgiou, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Preeti Rao, IIT–Bombay, India
  • Iris Ren, Utrecht University, the Netherlands
  • Spencer Russell, MIT Media Lab, US
  • Justin Salamon, New York University, US
  • Markus Schedl, Johannes Kepler University Linz, Austria
  • Sertan Şentürk, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
  • Amina Shabbeer, Amazon Music, US
  • Jeffrey Smith, Smule, US
  • Jordan Smith, AIST, Japan
  • Ajay Srinivasamurthy, Idiap Research Institute, Switzerland
  • Mi Tian, Queen Mary University of London, UK
  • Derek Tingle, SoundCloud, US
  • Doug Turnbull, Ithaca College, US
  • George Tzanetakis, University of Victoria, Canada
  • Rafael Valle, Center for New Music and Audio Technologies, US
  • Makarand Velankar, MKSSS’s Cummins College of Engineering, Pune, India
  • Gissel Velarde, Aalborg University, Denmark
  • Vladimir Viro, Peachnote GmbH, Germany
  • Anja Volk, Utrecht University, the Netherlands
  • Luwei Yang, Queen Mary University London, UK
  • Eva Zangerle, University of Innsbruck, Austria

2016 edition

Mentoring Program Committee

  • Amélie Anglade, Freelance Data Science & MIR Consultant, Germany
  • Emilia Gómez, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
  • Blair Kaneshiro, Stanford University, USA
  • Anja Volk, Utrecht University, the Netherlands

22 mentees of the pilot program reside in Denmark, India, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, UK, Uruguay, USA.

We thank our generous mentors for dedicating their time to this program:

  • Ana M. Barbancho, University of Malaga, Spain
  • Isabel Barbancho, University of Malaga, Spain
  • Sebastian Böck, Johannes Kepler University, Austria
  • Ching-Hua Chuan, University of North Florida, USA
  • Tom Collins, De Montfort University, UK
  • Sally Jo Cunningham, Waikato University, New Zealand
  • Johanna Devaney, Ohio State University, USA
  • J. Stephen Downie, University of Illinois, USA
  • Douglas Eck, Google, USA
  • Dan Ellis, Columbia University and Google, USA
  • Ichiro Fujinaga, McGill University, Canada
  • Ryan Groves, Music & Data Science Software Consultant, Germany
  • Dorien Herremans, Queen Mary University of London, UK
  • Alvin Hill, University of Michigan, USA
  • Xiao Hu, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
  • Rebecca Kleinberger, MIT Media Lab, USA
  • Audrey Laplante, Université de Montréal, Canada
  • Robin Laney, Open University, UK
  • Jin Ha Lee, University of Washington, USA
  • Cynthia Liem, TU Delft, the Netherlands
  • Ewa Lukasik, Poznan University of Technology, Poland
  • Oriol Nieto, Pandora, USA
  • Sebastian Stober, University of Potsdam, Germany
  • George Tzanetakis, University of Victoria, Canada