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About me

Ben Young, BA Hons (1st class), MSc, PhD

Babel Editing's chief academic editor

I began editing in 1997. As a graduate student I helped visiting academics and international students polish up their texts. My first proper copyediting job was a PhD dissertation on cognitive science: the content was excellent, but formally it needed extensive rewriting. It went on to pass without correction.

Between 2000 and 2008 I worked in universities and NGOs, and engaged in community action. This has given me experience of many areas of research, as set out below. I started editing full-time in 2008. [See full CV here.]

Doctoral research

Research experience

  • Epistemology

  • Philosophy of science

  • Logic and metaphysics

  • Philosophy of language

My PhD thesis was entitled “Naturalizing the A Priori: Experience-independent Knowledge” (Edinburgh 2000), supervised by Timothy Williamson.

Democratic theory

Research experience

  • Participatory democracy

  • Scottish and UK politics

  • Devolution

  • Democratic theory

After graduation, I was (in 2001) appointed research officer for the Scottish Civic Forum, an organization charged with promoting participatory democracy in Scotland. I designed, implemented, and authored the report of the “Audit of democratic participation” project, supervised by professors from the University of Edinburgh’s politics and sociology departments.

Publications and conference papers

  • Young, B. 2002. Participation matters: Report of the Audit of Democratic Participation (Edinburgh: Scottish Civic Forum).
  • Scottish Civic Forum: Strategy and philosophy. Paper presented to Stirling Politics and Philosophy Reading Group, October 2004; and at the Edinburgh College of Divinity/Irish School of Ecumenics conference “A Place For All?” Belfast, September 2004.
  • Young, B. 2005. Scottish Civic Forum: Strategy and philosophy. In Proceedings of the “A Place for All?” conference, Centre for Theology and Public Issues, Old College, Edinburgh.

Citizenship education

Research experience

  • Community development

  • Curriculum development

  • Citizenship education

  • Cosmopolitan ethics

  • Global citizenship

In 2003 I conducted research on political decentralization and economic development in the Republic of Mali, West Africa. On return to Scotland I was appointed NGO coordinator of the Education for Global Citizenship Project, based in the University of Glasgow. I also taught philosophy at Stirling University, and developed a dialectic e-democracy project called Ken Yersel. In 2004–5 I spent two months at the University of St. Andrews as visiting fellow at the Centre for Ethics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs.

Publications and conference papers

  • Young, B. 2004. Global citizens unite. Times Educational Supplement Scotland (Sept 3).
  • Education for global citizenship: Putting the horse back in front of the cart. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Philosophy of Education Society, New College, Oxford, 2005.
  • Blee, H., Britton, A., Davis, B., and Young, B. 2006. Never the twain shall meet? Breaking barriers through a global citizenship partnership between NGOs and a higher education institution. Policy and Practice: Development Education Review 2.

International development

Research experience

  • African history

  • Economic history

  • Economics

  • International development

  • Third World Debt

  • Globalization

  • New social movements

In 2005 I was appointed head of Jubilee Scotland, the Scottish branch of the campaign to cancel Third World Debt. Collaborating with national and international NGO networks, I designed campaigns and initiated studies into the politics of international development.

Publications and conference papers

  • Civil Society and the G8 debt deal. Paper presented to Stirling University Colloquium on Justice, Security, and Rights. 6–8 October, 2005.
  • Young, B. 2006. The G8 debt deal: A commentary. Globalisations 3 (2): 264–65.
  • MSc seminar on Third World Debt and African development, delivered to University of Edinburgh Centre of African Studies MSc course, March 2008.
  • Guest lecture on new social movements, delivered to Stirling University Politics undergraduates, March 2008.
  • Numerous online research and policy papers, as well as articles for newspapers, etc.
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