The global struggle for the right to a place to live

The problem of inadequate housing and living conditions facing one quarter of the world's population is situated in this article within the framework of human rights, and of international recognition of the basic rights to a place to live, and to gain and sustain an adequate standard of living. The nature and scale of the housing crisis points to a failure of governance that leads to exclusion, dispossession, and violence becoming endemic to societies: the institutionalisation of insecure and inadequate housing and living conditions. The author draws on the experience of Habitat International Coalition (HIC) in developing and supporting a comprehensive range of actions at local, national, regional, and international levels; and suggests some of the elements required if changes are not only to be promoted and campaigned for, but also sustained.