MS Network was initiated when Marc Battier (MINT/IREMUS/EMSAN - Institute of Research in Musicology and Univ. Paris-Sorbonne) and Leigh Landy (MTI Research Centre - De Montfort Univ.) both felt that a recognised platform for sharing scholarship in this field was missing. The creation of a bilingual conference platform specifically focused on relevant areas seemed to be the logical first step towards resolving this issue. They proposed a meeting that became part of IRCAM’s Résonances activities in 2003 entitled “Electroacoustic Musics: A century of innovation involving sound and technology - resources, discourse, analytical tools” which was to become the first EMS Network event, be it prior to EMS being launched. Subsequent to this event, they were joined by Daniel Teruggi (INA/GRM) who was to become the third Executive Director of EMS.
EMS Network has been organised to fill an important gap in terms of electroacoustic music, namely focusing on the better understanding of the various manifestations of electroacoustic music. Areas related to the study of electroacoustic music range from the musicological to more interdisciplinary approaches, from studies concerning the impact of technology on musical creativity to the investigation of the ubiquitous nature of electroacoustic sounds today. The choice of the word, ‘network’ is of fundamental importance as one of our goals is to make relevant initiatives more widely available.
The original plan was to hold an event every other year, the second of which was held in Montreal hosted collaboratively by Concordia, McGill and Montréal Universities in 2005 called EMS05. The name, EMS, was launched by way of this conference and the event is now an annual one.
As of 2006 EMS Network has become a formal entity as an international association with an [Executive Board and an Honorary President]. It has also decided to create a community of interested people through its planned membership scheme. EMS Network is also considering set up a list for discussion within its subject areas with members of the community. It is responsible for the publication of its conference content. In 2006, as part of its future plans, thanks to a collaboration with ISAST (International Society for the Arts, Sciences and technology) and OLATS (Observatoire Leonardo des Arts et Technosciences), a Leonardo-EMS prize was given to a selected communication of a researcher under 35 years of age for publication of the paper in Leonardo (The MIT Press).