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Right to Food Cities: the Role of Local Governments in the Fight against Hunger

Morris, Katie

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Katie Morris
PGR Student Doctor of Philosophy


The state-centric nature of international law has been recognized as a severe barrier to the realization of human rights since the outset and remains a concern today across the globe. However, the dominant space the state has historically occupied within the field as duty-bearer, deemed almost exclusively responsible for citizens’ enjoyment of rights, faces a small yet by no means insignificant challenge in the form of human rights cities. While there is a rich literature surrounding municipalities whose local governments embrace non-discrimination, participatory democracy and other human rights principles, a distinct, yet equally fascinating development is the trend in cities who have committed to the furtherance of a singular right. One such phenomenon which has yet to receive significant attention within the academy is the rise in right to food cities in the UK, referring to those which have joined the campaign for domestic recognition of the right. In light of the UK government’s deep-seated resistance to the right, this article explores the advent of right to food cities/municipalities and their potential as an alternative means of targeting hunger and food insecurity within the state. While it is recognized that each individual initiative may only have a localized impact, it is argued that their collective force should not be dismissed at this early stage—their calls for change are only likely to increase in fervour as the effects of the cost-of-living crisis upon the population worsen.


Morris, K. (2024). Right to Food Cities: the Role of Local Governments in the Fight against Hunger. Journal of Human Rights Practice, Article huae010.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 20, 2024
Online Publication Date May 20, 2024
Publication Date May 20, 2024
Deposit Date Jul 2, 2024
Publicly Available Date Jul 2, 2024
Journal Journal of Human Rights Practice
Print ISSN 1757-9619
Electronic ISSN 1757-9627
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Article Number huae010
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Copyright Statement
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial-No Derivs licence (, which permits non-commercial reproduction and distribution of the work, in any medium, provided the original work is not altered or transformed in any way, and that the work is properly cited.

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