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World Hunger

  1. Nigel Dower

Published Online: 1 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781444367072.wbiee143

The International Encyclopedia of Ethics

How to Cite

Dower, N. 2013. World Hunger. The International Encyclopedia of Ethics. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 FEB 2013


Hunger is the lack of food needed to avoid malnutrition, and world hunger is the aggregated version of this, with by far the most hunger located in the Third World. Malnutrition, as the lack of some or all the nutrients necessary for health, affects approximately one billion hungry people in the world. Almost all hunger is caused by absolute poverty, defined as living on US$1.25 per day or less. This also affects approximately one billon people – many children – or nearly one-fifth of the world's population. Even with a rising world population, the world produces enough food to meet everyone's nutritional needs. If the poor do not have enough, it is because, in the absence of external intervention, they either do not produce enough from their land or do not earn enough to buy it.


  • cosmopolitanism;
  • development;
  • poverty;
  • practical (applied) ethics