Council & Committees

The RMA is governed by its Council, which is elected by the membership at Annual General Meetings. Members can view minutes of recent meetings by logging into their account. Council members are Directors of the company and Trustees of the charity, and oversee its governance.

In addition to the Council, there are six Officers of the Association and two Student Representatives:

Jeffrey Dean


Michael Byde


Ellen Falconer


Susan Bagust photo  
Susan Bagust Nuria Bonet Michelle Assay
  • Jeffrey Dean, Executive Officer – Deals with membership payments and subscriptions, takes minutes at RMA meetings and keeps the Association’s rules and regulations up to date.
  • Michael Byde, Digital Technologies Officer – Maintains the RMA website and the online renewal and subscriptions system, edits news items and web features, and supports associated administrative procedures.
  • Ellen Falconer, Communications Officer – Supports the RMA’s publicity and communications strategy, manages the RMA social media accounts, and edits the monthly E-Bulletin.
  • Susan Bagust, Student Liaison Officer – Works closely with students who wish to organise RMA-supported study days to develop ideas and plan events.
  • Nuria Bonet, Research Training Officer – Works with research students and early-career researchers in Music to coordinate  research training activities provided by the RMA and to establish collaborative working with other providers of research training.
  • Michelle Assay, Flagship Conferences Coordinator – Liaises with and supports partner hosts for the RMA Annual Conference and the RMA/BFE Research Students Conference.

Student Representatives

Will Finch, Student Representative (January 2018-January 2020)

Patrick Huang, Student Representative (January 2019-January 2021)

Much of the day-to-day running of the RMA is organised through Sub-committees of the Council, each of which has a different area of responsibility. These are:

Awards (Chair: Pauline Fairclough)

The awards committee overseas the administration of the association’s awards. The committee is responsible for generating and soliciting nominations for Honorary Membership, the Dent Medal, and the Jerome Roche Prize, and making recommendations of recipients to the association’s governing council. The committee also receives and considers applications for small research grants. Full details of all grants and awards offered by the RMA is available here.

Events committee (Chair: Thomas Schmidt)

The Events Committee meets at least three times a year, and is responsible for planning one-day meetings, conferences, and other similar events. The committee makes decisions about dates, locations and contents of different events, and delegates responsibility for local arrangements. Organisers of the Association’s events – such as the Annual Conference and Research Students’ Conference – are invited to attend. A full list of all forthcoming RMA events is available here.

External Affairs (Chair: Simon McVeigh)

The committee for external affairs deals with consultations from research councils and other national bodies, consulting among the membership on such matters and responding on behalf of the association. This committee is linked to the Music Research Consortium.

Finance, Membership and Communications (Chair: Sarah Hibberd)

The Finance and Membership Committee advises the Treasurer on the preparation of budgets and on the general financial position of the Association. In addition, the Committee reviews the membership and the levels of subscription, and reviews honoraria for RMA officers. The Committee also oversees marketing and communications activity including the Newsletter and the website.

Publications (Chair: Chris Banks)

The Publications Committee has responsibility for all RMA academic publications, encompassing editorial policy, publicity, and marketing. The Committee takes decisions on the timing and contents of publications, and in addition acts as the Editorial Board of the Journal of the Royal Musical Association. More information about RMA publications is available here.

Search (Chair: Elaine Kelly)

The Search Committee assists the Council and other committees in searches for appropriate personnel for all offices of the Association. These include (when vacancies arise) members of council and Vice-Presidents, Chairmanship of Proceedings and Publications committees, the secretary, administrator, editorships and convenors.

Student Affairs (Chair: Will Finch)

The Student Committee acts as a voice for students, representing their concerns and needs to the RMA. Read more on the student pages.