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Dr Ananay Aguilar


I came to the Faculty of Music to develop the Leverhulme-funded project 'Performers' rights: music-making in the digital era' in collaboration with the Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Law (CIPIL) at the Faculty of Law. Drawing extensively on interviews, I examined the life-cycle of performers’ rights, taking into account 1) their history, 2) their use by performers, 3) their management and  4) processes of legislative reform, with a case study on the Fair Internet for Performers Campaign. For more details on this project, please visit the project website.

Towards the end of the project, I won the  Mellon Centre for Disciplinary Innovation Teaching Fellowship at the Centre for Research in the Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities (CRASSH) with Herchel Smith Professor of Intellectual Property Law Lionel Bently to teach a course reflecting on academia-industry collaborations. I also taught undergraduate and graduate students on the music industry in the digital age, public policy engagement, ethnomusicology and sound studies, and served as the first representative for post-doctoral scholars at the Faculty.

I am currently writing a book under contract with Palgrave on the legal rights of UK music performers. I also consult for the music industry, teach and give talks in a variety of academic and public-facing events.

I hold a BA from Universidad de los Andes in Colombia, an MA from Universidade Estadual de Campinas in Brazil and a PhD from Royal Holloway, University of London. I speak Spanish, Portuguese and German and my training has been consistently grant-funded.


Colleges, Departments and Institutes

Darwin College:
Research Associate

Research Interests

I am fascinated by the interface between policy and commerce in the music industry and its impact on the lives of professional musicians. Over the last twelve years I have engaged in research on the production and circulation of recordings, considering everything from aesthetics to economics, technology and law. I actively seek collaborations with scholars in music and other disciplines, as well as with creative industry and government professionals.


Other Publications

Review of Unfree Masters: Recording Artists and the Politics of Work by Matt Stahl, Durham and London: Duke University Press, 2013, Journal of Popular Music Studies, 2015, vol. 27, issue 2, pp. 232-5.

'Processos de estruturação como ferramenta para a análise de música eletroacústica', Debates, no.9, agosto 2007, pp. 52-71 (Portuguese).

'Reflexiones sobre el análisis de música electroacústica', Pauta, cuadernos de teoría y crítica musical, vol. XXVI, no. 101, ene-mar 2007, pp. 46-52 (Spanish).

'La circularidad en Aura, la ópera de Mario Lavista', Cuadernos de música, artes visuales y artes escénicas, vol.1 no.2, 2006, pp. 53-71 (Spanish).

'Identificar e qualificar: de Schaeffer a Smalley', Cadernos da pós-graduação, vol.2, no.1, 2006, pp. 112-120 (Portuguese).