Xavier Serra is a Professor of the Department of Information and Communication Technologies and Director of the Music Technology Group at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona. After a multidisciplinary academic education, he obtained a PhD in Computer Music from Stanford University in 1989 with a dissertation on the spectral processing of musical sounds that is considered a key reference in the field. His research interests cover the computational analysis, description, and synthesis of sound and music signals, with a balance between basic and applied research and approaches from both scientific/technological and humanistic/artistic disciplines. Dr. Serra is very active in the fields of Audio Signal Processing, Sound and Music Computing, Music Information Retrieval and Computational Musicology at the local and international levels, being involved in the editorial board of a number of journals and conferences and giving lectures on current and future challenges of these fields. He was awarded an Advanced Grant from the European Research Council to carry out the project CompMusic aimed at promoting multicultural approaches in music information research.


1989   PhD in Computer Music, Stanford University, USA.
1983   Master in Music, Florida State University, USA.
1981   Bachelor in Biology, Universitat de Barcelona, Spain.

Employment history

2017-now  Full Professor (Catedrático) at UPF.
1996-2017 Associate Professor (Profesor Titular) at UPF.
1995-1996 Visiting Professor (Profesor Visitante) at UPF.
1991-1994 Post-doc at Phonos Foundation.
1989-1991 Chief Engineer at Yamaha Music Technologies USA, Inc.

Current professional responsibilities at UPF

1994 - Founder and Director of Music Technology Group (MTG).
2008 - Coordinator of the Master in Sound and Music Computing of DTIC.
2008 - Member of the Postgraduate and Doctoral Studies Commission of DTIC.
2018 - Member of the Faculty Commission of UPF.

Other current professional responsibilities

2017 - Co-founder of Music Muni Labs.
2011 - President of Phonos Foundation. 
2008 - Member of the International Society for Music Information Retrieval.
1999 - Member of the editorial board of the Journal of New Music Research.
2008 - Member of the Scientific Committee of the Sound and Music Computing Conference.
1998 - Member of the Scientific Committee of the Digital Audio Effects Conference.
2013 - Member of the International Advisory Council of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Music Media and Technology (CIRMMT) of McGill University (Montreal, Canada).

Distinctions and awards

2019 ICREA Academia Prize. Generalitat de Catalunya.
2018 Google Research Award for Freesound Datasets.
2017 Proof of Concept Grant for TECSOME. European Research Council.
2016 “Teaching activity at Master level” Prize given by UPF Board of Trustees.
2016 Best paper award at 6th International Workshop Folk Music Analysis.
2017 Proof of Concept Grant for CAMUT. European Research Council.
2013 Best paper award at 14th International Workshop on Content-based Multimedia Indexing.
2013 ICREA Academia Prize. Generalitat de Catalunya.
2010 Advanced Grant for CompMusic. European Research Council.
2009 Google Research Award for Freesound.
2008 ICREA Academia Prize. Generalitat de Catalunya.

Publications and other activities

Web of the UPF on scientific production