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About Us

RILM is committed to documenting the world’s knowledge about all musical traditions, and to making this knowledge accessible to research and performance communities worldwide via digital collections and advanced tools. RILM’s collections aim to include the music scholarship of all countries, in all languages, and across all disciplinary and cultural boundaries, thereby fostering research in the arts, humanities, sciences, and social sciences.

Panpipes (paixiao), 19th century, China. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Credits


Répertoire International de Littérature Musicale (RILM) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. It is an international collaboration based on the UNESCO model. The hub of the organization is RILM’s International Center, housed at The Graduate Center, City University of New York, in New York City. The staff of the International Center is made up of musicologists, ethnomusicologists, theorists, language experts, technologists, and assistants who, in collaboration with a global network of national committees and contributors, produce resources for the music research community. RILM is a joint project of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres (IAML); International Council for Traditional Music and Dance (ICTMD); the International Musicological Society (IMS), and the International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM). It is advised by a Commission Internationale Mixte consisting of representatives of all four organizations.


RILM was founded in 1966 by Barry S. Brook under the auspices of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centers (IAML) and the International Musicological Society (IMS). RILM’s history can be reviewed via a succinct chronology of its milestones and by perusing the annual summaries of RILM’s activities.