Ben Kirshner is an Associate Professor in the School of Education at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His research examines how young people from marginalized communities interpret their social context and learn how to exercise collective political agency. In a current study supported by the Spencer Foundation, Ben is working with literacy and science teachers to provide opportunities for their students to discuss, investigate, and take action to dismantle educational barriers, ranging from hostile school climates to inadequate facilities. Ben is also co-PI for a international study, led by Roderick Watts and funded by Atlantic Philanthropies, which examines community-based youth organizing as a vehicle for civic engagement in South Africa, Ireland, and the United States. His publications have discussed youth civic engagement and activism, participatory action research, and urban education policy.