Dr. Barrios is a Board Certified Forensic Examiner and a professor of Latina/o psychology; Latin American studies; ethnic studies; qualitative research and methodology; and cultural criminology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He is also the chair of the Department of Latin American & Latina/o Studies. Since 1988, Dr. Barrios is a columnist of El Diario La Prensa in New York City, one of the oldest Spanish newspapers in the United States.
He is the co-editor with Louis Kontos and David C. Brotherton of Gangs and Society: Alternative Perspective (2003-Columbia University); co-author with David C. Brotherton of Almighty Latin King & Queen Nation: Street Politics and the Transformation of a New York City Gang (2004-Columbia University); and co-editor with Dr. Mauro Cerbino of Otras naciones: Jóvenes, transnacionalismo y exclusión. Quito: Ecuador: Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales. Dr. Barrios is also the author of Josconiando: Dimensiones Sociales y políticas de la espiritualidad (2000-Editorial Aguiar), Pitirreando: De la desesperanza a la esperanza (2004-Editorial Edil) and Coquiando: Meditaciones subversivas para un mundo mejor (2008-Editorial Búho).
Current research projects include work on people deported from the USA with particular focus on psychosocial trauma; the transnationalization of street gangs; and the socio-historical and cultural contemporary perspectives of life in the Dominican-Haitian Border.
In addition, Fr. Barrios is an associate priest at St. Mary's Episcopal Church in West Harlem. Luis Barrios is a community activist, a priest activist and a faculty activist.