Rujing Stacy Huang earned her PhD in ethnomusicology from Harvard University in 2019 and is currently Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Hong Kong. Her latest research concerns the ethical, cultural, and socio-political implications of artificial intelligence (AI) when applied to the arts, focusing in particular on the political economies of music AI in contemporary societies. Her scholarship informs and is informed by her entrepreneurial work as a Director and Co-Organizer of the AI Song Contest, a foundation (Dutch: stichting) based in the Netherlands which organizes an annual international competition exploring human-AI partnership in the creative songwriting process. The contest made the front page of The New York Times in 2021, and has received coverage from Scientific American, Science, Billboard, Music Business Worldwide, MIT Technology Review, BBC, etc.
She currently serves as a Co-Chair of the Sound Studies Section at the Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM), and sits on the Ethics Committee of the International Society for Music Information Retrieval (ISMIR). She is formerly a postdoctoral researcher at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, working on the EU-funded MUSAiC project (“Music at the Frontiers of Artificial Creativity and Criticism,” 2020-2025, ERC-2019-COG No. 864189).
Huang’s dissertation examines the twenty-first century revivals of yayue, ritual music historically performed in the courts of ancient and imperial China, and addresses such issues as musical nationalism, (auto)exoticism, and ritual and performativity. She is developing this work into a monograph. She is the winner of numerous fellowships and awards, was previously affiliated with Harvard’s Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, and is a grantee of the Asian Cultural Council (ACC).
As a singer-songwriter, Huang has won singing/songwriting competitions, served as an external guest judge for the “Songs for Social Change” Songwriting Contest at Berklee College of Music, and given invited seminars on lyric-writing at Harvard and beyond. Her first single, commissioned by NetEase Cloud Music, entered the DSP’s Official Top 30 Folk (minyao) Genre Chart and Top 100 Hong Kong Folk-Pop Chart in 2023. She is preparing her debut album. She has also performed as an improviser/sound artist, was a member of the Princeton Laptop Orchestra (PLOrk), and her electroacoustic composition/improvisation has been performed at HYDRA (with the Harvard Univ. Studio for Electroacoustic Composition).