Þóra Einarsdóttir, chair (Iceland University of the Arts, Department of Music)
Alexander Roberts (Iceland University of the Arts, Department of Performing Arts)
Marc van Roon (Prince Claus Conservatoire, Groningen)
Renee Jonker (Royal Conservatoire, The Hague)
Magdalena Bork (University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna)
Detta Danford (Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London)
Dinah Stabb (Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London)
Natasha Zielazinski (Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London)
Leif Lundberg (Stockholm University of the Arts)
Ulrika Tenstam (Stockholm University of the Arts)
Shane Taylor Constante (Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, Singapore)
Bethany May Nette (Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music, Singapore)

Coordinated by Þorgerður Edda Hall & María Ösp Ómarsdóttir
Edited by Þorgerður Edda Hall

Published in October 2018

This publication was supported by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained herein.


This website contains the output of the working group on mentoring, with the objective of exploring mentoring as a tool for innovation, professional integration and talent development.

With mentoring being a central component of the NAIP programme, the focus was on looking at how mentoring has served the NAIP students and to explore the question: What is good mentoring in today’s learning environment?

The group looked into the existing mentoring practice within the NAIP programme, as well as various forms of mentoring relationships and approaches, such as informal, formal, one-to-one, co-mentoring and group mentoring. The group explored everything from coaching techniques with rules and protocols, to mentoring as a reflective space for learning process and mindfulness.

In a search for open awareness and enabling an empowering environment, the complex triangle between institutional search for safety, equality and predictability was explored, and important questions of ethical concerns were raised.

Because of the complex, context-sensitive and undefined nature of mentoring, the following output will not present a final manual or an authoritative script with an overview of new rules and regulations of mentoring. The group found more value in presenting hints and suggestions for good mentoring, based on the group’s expertise and experience, dialogues and arts based explorations. On this website we will:

  • Share co-mentoring processes and narratives.

  • Point to the dilemmas and complexities that arise from implementing mentoring in a fast changing professional environment.

  • Discuss the ethics of the mentoring practice.

  • Recommend available literature, theories and activities that have strongly inspired and informed the groups meetings and explorations.

We have found that the key focus is to facilitate, and to make the tacit and intuitive knowledge of the mentee explicit. However, the approaches to this are manifold. In that regard we find it useful to express what mentoring is not, then to reduce the praxis to any statement of what it is.

  • Mentoring is not self help therapy. Yet, it can be healing.

  • Mentoring is not a business class. Yet, it can be empowering.

  • Mentoring is not research. Yet, insights and knowledge might emerge.

  • Mentoring is neither a skill specific lesson, nor a moment for instruction. And yet, learning can take place.

  • Mentoring is not a place for controlling credits and attendance issues. Yet, organizational institutional matters might be relevant to look at.

  • Mentoring is not an informal social gathering with coffee or tea. Yet, friendship and companionship might emerge and tea can be part of that.

  • Mentoring has its own unique qualities, to be explored and made explicit within our communities of practice.

  • Mentors build on intuitive tacit knowledge and playful improvisational skills, in order to respond professionally to the mentee’s needs.

  • Mentoring does not require mentors to follow scripts and protocols. However, some of the helpful mentoring skills may come from engaging with a variety scripts, coaching techniques and protocols.

This website represents our shared set of mentoring values. We wish to include you, and all existing and future mentors and mentees in our conversation.