At the center of societal and economic concerns combining culture and information technologies, the current research at IRCAM is seen by the international research community as a reference for interdisciplinary projects on the sciences and technologies for sound and music, constantly exposed to society’s new needs and uses.

IRCAM’s innovation dynamic is based on a unique model focused on contemporary creation. Close collaboration between artists and researchers leads to inventions for the sound production of works that are, in fact, advanced prototypes. The technical engineering process utilizes attempts to extrapolate and pool unique artistic approaches in generic concepts and instantiate them as forms adapted for broader use.

The IRCAM Forum is an international community of IRCAM software users, a privileged group able to discover the institute’s technologies immediately after its in-house use for artistic productions. Forum members—primarily professional artists or scientists—have access to the most open and experimental forms of our technologies: the openness and programmability of the environments/applications make it possible to adapt them for a broad number of different aesthetic approaches.

Industrial collaborations represent a large part of the activity, be they collaborative R&D projects, research contracts, or support for the creation of startups and spinoffs. The availability of optimized, multi-platform technological bricks is the main channel for industrial transfers, reflected in numerous exploitation rights licenses. The production of commercial software collections carried out in collaboration with renowned software companies (e.g. Flux::, Ableton, Plugivery, etc.) enabling the institute’s technologies to reach a broader audience.

Forty years after the creation of the visionary project that is IRCAM-Centre Pompidou and the development of its unique art-science-technology model, the importance of the role of artists in the process of industrial innovation has become more and more interesting to decision-makers. For the first call for propositions for the H2020 ICT36 launched in 2016 by DG Connect of the European Commission the VERTIGO project led by IRCAM was selected to coordinate pan-European collaborations between artists and technology research projects to aid innovation. The major results of the VERTIGO project will be shown at the annual event Mutations-Creation dedicated to new societal concerns connecting art and innovation, inaugurated in 2017 at the Centre Pompidou.

In 2020, IRCAM created Ircam Amplify, a spin-off for the commercialization of the institute’s audio innovations. A true interface between state of the art of audio research and the industrial world on a global scale, Ircam Amplify is a major actor in the sound revolution of the 21st century.