University of Calgary

Shirley Steinberg

  • Werklund Research Professor of Critical Youth Studies

Currently Teaching

Not currently teaching any courses.


Shirley R. Steinberg is a Research Professor of Critical Youth Studies at the University of Calgary. She is the author and editor of many books in critical pedagogy, urban and youth culture, and cultural studies. Originally a social/improvisational theatre creator, she has facilitate happenings and flashmobs globally. A regular contributor to CBC Radio One, CTV, The Toronto Globe and Mail, The Montreal Gazette, and Canadian Press, she is an internationally known speaker and teacher. She is also the founding editor of "Taboo: The Journal of Culture and Education", "The International Journal of Youth Studies", and the Managing Editor of "The International Journal of Critical Pedagogy". The co-founder of The Paulo and Nita Freire International Project for Critical Pedagogy, she is the co-organizer of International Institute of Critical Pedagogy and Transformative Leadership, she is committed to a global community of transformative educators and community workers engaged in radical love, social justice, and the situating of power within social and cultural contexts, specifically involving youth.

Research & Scholarly Activity

Dr. Steinberg's work focuses on the cultural/social/education development of youth, and critical community involvement. She is concerned with how society views young people, and her work creates an environment in which youth are viewed as positive democratic agents within society. As a Research Chair, she has established an international network of youth and community workers engaged in a critical pedagogical approach to activism and pedagogy. Her work is currently focused on issues of Islamophobia, Empowerment of Women, and Critical Diversity Studies.


The Pennsylvania State University

University of Lethbridge

University of Lethbridge

Professional & Community Affiliations

Dr. Steinberg is an international speaker, teacher, and author. She is a collaborator with several countries in several continents. She is also active in Canadian organizations and a media contributor. In her position as Research Chair, she is dedicated to creating a robust global network infrastructure for critical youth and community workers. Her work in Islamophobia is rooted in re-articulating the changing nature of Islamophobia, in what she terms the Third Wave.

Steinberg serves on the new Executive Boards of the Calgary Refugee Support Group (formally Syrian Refugee Support Group), and the RS Foundation, a Canadian nonprofit organization which provides ocular procedures to restore eyesight and places community wells in Bangladesh and Pakistan. She is Co-PI, Canadian Engagement Study: Assessing Public Communication Grant, a national survey assessing the communication gap between Muslims and other Canadians.

Current Research Professor Affiliations (2017):

  • The University of Barcelona
  • Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia
  • Murdoch University, Perth, Australia
  • IPEC, Instituto de Pedagogia Critica Chihuahua, Mexico


Critically Researching Youth.  (2016) Steinberg, S. R. and Ibrahim, A. (Eds.) NY:  Peter Lang Publishing. 

Curriculum:  Decanonizing the Field.  (2016) Paraskeva, J. and Steinberg, S.R.  (Eds.)  NY:  Peter Lang Publishing.

Doing Educational Research. (2015) Tobin, K. and Steinberg, S. R. (Eds.) Rotterdam:  Sense Publishing.

The Praxis of English Language Teaching and Learning:  Beyond the Binaries…Researching Critically in the EFL Classroom.  (2015) Vicars, M., Steinberg, S.R., and McKenna, T.  (Eds.) Rotterdam:  Sense Publishing.

Critical Youth Studies Reader. Steinberg, S.R. & Ibrahim, A. (Eds.) New York: Peter Lang Publishing. (Award: Critics Choice, American Educational Studies Association, 2014)

Critical Qualitative Research. Steinberg, S.R. & Cannella, G. (Eds.) New York: Peter Lang Publishing. (Award: Critics Choice, American Educational Studies Association, 2012)

Steinberg, S.R. (2016). “Undressing Disney: A Wolf in Sheep's Clothing, Disney, Culture, and Curriculum.” In Teaching with Disney. Jennifer Sandlin and Julie Maudlin, Eds. New York, NY: Routledge Press.

Steinberg, S. R. (2015). Pesquisa com Bricolagem e Pedagogia Cultural, Estudos Culturais & Educação. InContingências, Articulações, Aventuras, Dispersões Canoas: Editora da ULBRA, .KIRCHOF, Edgar R.; WORTMANN, Maria Lúcia; COSTA, Marisa V. , Brasil, Eds.

Steinberg, S. R. (2015). “Postmodern Fire Hoses: Media Recollections From Southern California.” In The Assault on Communities of Color: Exploring the Realities of Race-Based Violence. Kenneth Fasching-Varner and Nicolas Daniel Hartlep, Eds. Rowman and Littlefield.

Steinberg, S. R. (2015). “Employing the Bricolage as Critical Research in Teaching English as a Foreign Language.” In Beyond the Binaries: Researching Critically in EFL Classrooms. Rotterdam: Sense Publishing. Vicars, M., Steinberg, S.R., McKenna, T. & Cacciattolo, M., Eds.


  • 2016: Werklund School of Education (University of Calgary) Distinguished Lecture Award
  • 2016: Finalist for Community Sustainability Award, The University of Calgary
  • 2015: Lifetime Achievement Award, International Conference for Critical Media Literacy. Normal, Illinois
  • 2014: American Education Studies Association Critical Choice Book Award:  Critical Youth Studies. Ibrahim, A. & Steinberg, S.R., Eds. NY:  Peter Lang Publishing.
  • 2013: Cinema Perpetuum Mobile Film Festival Screening Selection: Seeing through Paulo’s Glasses:  Political Clarity, Courage, and Humility. Producer and Co-Director, with Dr. G. Cucinelli.  CPM, Minsk, Belarus.
  • 2013: Lifetime Service Recognition from Scholars of Color, International Institute for Critical Pedagogy and Transformative Leadership: Malta, October 14.  Award presented by Dr. Venus Williams as the representative of combined group of North American scholars.
  • 2012: American Education Studies Association Critical Choice Book Award:  Critical Qualitative Research Reader.  Steinberg, S.R. & Canella, G., Eds. NY:  Peter Lang Publishing.
  • 2012: Central Memorial High School Citizenship Award, Calgary, Alberta.
  • 2011: Paulo Freire Lifetime Achievement Award for Social Justice and Education, AERA Presentation by Chapman University Faculty of Education.
  • 2010: Distinguished Scholar Lecture University of Winnipeg Faculty of Education.
  • 2009: Texas Tech University Faculty of Education Helen Devitis Jones Medal for Excellence in Teaching.
  • 2006: The University of Lethbridge Alumnus of the Year
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