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How do new music genres emerge? Diversification processes in symbolic knowledge bases

: Klement, Benjamin; Strambach, Simone


Regional studies. Journal of the Regional Studies Association 53 (2019), Nr.10, S.1447-1458
ISSN: 0034-3404
Fraunhofer IMW ()
symbolic knowledge; related diversification; unrelated diversification; knowledge base; music

Using data on the emergence of music genres from 1970 to 2015, this paper examines the relative importance of related and unrelated diversification processes for symbolic knowledge creation. Modelling 33 urban music scenes from Northern America and Europe as network-based symbolic knowledge bases allows for the testing of whether new genres are related or unrelated to pre-existing knowledge bases. The results show that new music genres spawn mainly from local knowledge sources in the centre of music scenes. However, symbolic knowledge creation rarely happens without contributions of extra-local knowledge. These unrelated diversification processes are grounded in the anchoring of trends and fashions originating elsewhere.