Campaign spaces for sustainable development: a power analysis of the Fairtrade Town Campaign in the UK
This paper explores the role that Fairtrade towns and cities can play in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). As the largest consumers of resources, cities have a crucial role to play in the transition towards sustainable development, both within and outside their geographical boundaries. In the UK, towns and cities have driven the expansion of the Fair Trade movement through the ‘Fairtrade Town’ campaign, but an exploration of the relationship with sustainable development is currently missing. By applying power analysis we investigate campaign material produced by the Fairtrade Foundation and the experience of local campaigners. Our findings suggest that Fairtrade Towns operate as campaign spaces for sustainable development, challenging multiple forms of power and mobilizing resources on interrelated levels. Providing a framework to foster social equity on a glocal level, Fairtrade Towns hold the potential to contribute to multiple SDGs, representing a systemic approach to sustainable communities and cities.