Financial Regulation, Capabilities and Human Rights in the US Financial Crisis: The Case of Housing

This paper analyzes the role of finance and financial regulation in shaping capabilities, in the context of the 2008 financial crisis in the USA, paying particular attention to the implications for capability to be adequately housed. It argues that public reasoning and public action to safeguard this capability can benefit from reference to the obligation to realize the human right to adequate housing. The paper contributes to two areas of discussion that have been relatively neglected in relation to capabilities: the role of finance and financial regulation; and the role of human rights obligations in safeguarding and expanding capabilities.