BLOG – Emily’s INTERDEM academy fellowship

Emily Cousins, based at the University of Nottingham in England, has been awarded an INTERDEM Academy fellowship for 2017. Emily will travel to Denmark to spend 3 months with Professor Hanne Mette Ridder’s team at Aalborg University. Emily is a second year PhD student in Dementia Research, located at the Institute of Mental Health, focussing on the description and definition of arts interventions for people with dementia. Emily is part of TAnDem (The Arts and Dementia), a Doctoral Training Centre which has been funded by the Alzheimer’s Society in the UK. TAnDem is working to refine and strengthen the evidence base for using the arts as interventions for people living with dementia.

Emily will spend her time at Aalborg exploring the world of music therapy. Her PhD research seeks to produce an international taxonomy of arts interventions – a term borrowed from Biology meaning the science of classification. By exploring music as a modality and therapy as a discipline, Emily hopes to develop a case study to help illustrate and identify some of the fundamental ingredients required for successful arts interventions for people with dementia. She plans to undertake some ethnographic observations of music therapy sessions, as well as conduct a focus group with Danish colleagues. There will also be the opportunity for Emily to benefit from teaching and training, as part of the University’s Doctoral Programme in music therapy. The visit will enable international collaboration between colleagues in Nottingham and in Aalborg.