[Annual T.M.C. Asser Lecture] ‘The right to food, violence, and food systems’ by Michael Fakhri

20 April 2023
  • Starts at: 15:00h
  • Fee: Free
  • Venue: Peace Palace
  • Organiser: Asser Institute

“One of the main causes of hunger and famine is violence and armed conflict. In turn, armed conflict leads to more food insecurity. How then to get out of this vicious cycle?” says Michael Fakhri, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food and an internationally recognised expert on food systems and human rights.

On April 20, 2023, Professor Fakhri will deliver the 8th Annual T.M.C. Asser Lecture in the Peace Palace in the Hague. The title of his lecture is: ‘The right to food, violence, and food systems’. To allow for a better understanding of how food systems operate and to reframe how the right to food is addressed in international law, Michael Fakhri will examine forms of violence in food systems in his lecture. Sign up now to secure your spot!

About the 8th Annual T.M.C. Asser Lecture, Michael Fakhri writes: “Drawing on my work as Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food and my upcoming report to the Human Rights Council, I will outline a way out. I will explain how systems not only produce food but also amplify and produce forms of violence that make people more poor, vulnerable, and marginalised. I also describe how food systems rely on a global economy of dependency and extractivism. 
In sum, food systems are part of a cycle between structural inequality and systemic violence causing wide-spread human rights violations. I will address the war in Ukraine to highlight how international markets amplify rather than abate violence, creating global shocks from a regional war.”  

Watch the full lecture:

About Michael Fakhri

undefinedMr. Michael Fakhri, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food since 2020, is a professor at the University of Oregon School of Law where he teaches courses on human rights, food law, development, and commercial law. He is also the director of the Food Resiliency Project. He investigates key environmental and policy issues relating to all stages of the food system, including production, transportation, packaging and consumption. Mr. Fakhri has taught courses on the right to food at Harvard Law School, European University Institute, and the University of Arizona Indigenous Governance Program. He has lectured on international human rights and development topics at universities around the globe. Mr. Fakhri has further led public dialogues on human rights and development. During his practice as a lawyer, Mr. Fakhri fought for the rights of people who were indigent and incarcerated in a psychiatric institution. He is the author the book ‘Sugar and the Making of International Trade Law’, and co-author of ‘Bandung Global History and International Law: Critical Pasts and Pending Futures’ (co-edited with Vasuki Nesiah and Luis Eslava).

About the T.M.C. Asser Lecture
On the occasion of its 50th Anniversary (1965 – 2015), the T.M.C. Asser Instituut launched, on 2 December 2015, the Annual T.M.C. Asser Lecture on the development of international law. Each year, the Asser Institute invites an internationally renowned jurist and outstanding public intellectual to take inspiration from Nobel Peace Prize winner Tobias Asser’s vision and to examine – as Tobias Asser did in his days – how to respond to ‘the condition of society’. The Annual T.M.C. Asser Lecture is a platform for constructive, critical reflection on the role of law in addressing the challenges and (potentially radical) changes of the global society of the 21st century.