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Geoscience Communication An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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https://doi.org/10.5194/gc-2019-28
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
https://doi.org/10.5194/gc-2019-28
© Author(s) 2020. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Submitted as: research article 17 Jan 2020

Submitted as: research article | 17 Jan 2020

Review status
This preprint is currently under review for the journal GC.

Earth System Music: the methodology and reach of music generated from the United Kingdom Earth System Model

Lee de Mora1, Alistair A. Sellar2, Andrew Yool3, Julien Palmieri3, Robin S. Smith4,5, Till Kuhlbrodt4, Robert J. Parker6,7, Jeremy Walton2, Jeremy C. Blackford1, and Colin G. Jones8 Lee de Mora et al.
  • 1Plymouth Marine Laboratory, Plymouth, UK
  • 2Met Office Hadley Centre, Exeter, UK
  • 3National Oceanography Centre, Southampton
  • 4National Centre for Atmospheric Science, Department of Meteorology, University of Reading, Reading, UK
  • 5University of Reading, Reading, UK
  • 6National Centre for Earth Observation, Leicester, UK
  • 7University of Leicester, Leicester, UK
  • 8National Centre for Atmospheric Science, School of Earth and Environment, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK

Abstract. Scientific data is almost always represented graphically either in figures or in videos. With the ever-growing interest from the general public towards understanding climate science, it is becoming increasingly important that we present this information in ways accessible to non-experts.

In this pilot study, we use time series data from the first United Kingdom Earth System model (UKESM1) to create six procedurally generated musical pieces and use them to test whether we can use music to engage with the wider community. Each of these pieces is based around a unique part of UKESM1's ocean component model, either in terms of a scientific principle or a practical aspect of modelling. In addition, each piece is arranged using a different musical progression, style and tempo.

These pieces were performed by the digital piano synthesizer, TiMidity++, and were published on the lead author's YouTube channel. The videos all show the time progression of the data in time with the music and a brief description of the methodology is posted below the video. To disseminate these works, a link to each piece was published on the lead authors personal and professional social media accounts.

The reach of these works was analysed using YouTube's channel monitoring toolkit for content creators, YouTube studio. In the first ninety days after the first video was published, the six pieces reached at least 251 unique viewers, and have 553 total views. We found that most of the views occurred in the fourteen days immediately after each video was published. In effect, once the concept had been demonstrated to an audience, there was reduced enthusiasm from that audience to return to it immediately. This suggests that to use music effectively as an science outreach tool, the works needs to reach new audiences or new and unique content needs to be delivered to a returning audience.

Lee de Mora et al.

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Status: open (until 15 Mar 2020)
Status: open (until 15 Mar 2020)
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Lee de Mora et al.

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Short summary
In this pilot study, we use time series data from the first United Kingdom Earth System model (UKESM1) to create six procedurally generated musical pieces for piano and use them to test whether we can use music to engage with the wider community. Six pieces were produced, all of which help explain a specific aspect of Earth System Modelling. The pieces were published on YouTube alongside a video showing the data, and we monitored their reach.
In this pilot study, we use time series data from the first United Kingdom Earth System model...
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