Menu Close
Associate Professor of Political Theory, University of Leicester

Dr. Steve Cooke completed his undergraduate degree in Politics at the Open University. He has a Master’s Degree in Human Rights and a PhD in Politics from the University of Manchester. In 2012 Dr. Cooke was awarded the Society for Applied Philosophy’s 30th Anniversary Research Fellowship to research the use of violence in defence of non-human animals and the environment. His main area of research focuses on duties to non-human animals and the ethical status of law-breaking and political protest carried out for their sakes.

He is the author of What Are Animal Rights For?, published in 2023 by Bristol University Press.


  • –present
    Associate Professor of Political Theory, University of Leicester
  • 2015–2020
    Lecturer in Political Theory, University of Leicester
  • 2014–2015
    University Teacher in Theory and Animal Rights , University of Sheffield
  • 2014–2014
    Teaching Fellow in Environmental Politics, University of Keele
  • 2012–2013
    Research Fellow, University of Manchester


  • 2012 
    University of Manchester, PhD
  • 2009 
    University of Manchester, MA (Human rights)


  • 2023
    What are Animal Rights For?, Bristol University Press
  • 2021
    Cosmopolitan Disobedience, Journal of International Political Theory
  • 2021
    The Ethics of Touch and the Importance of Nonhuman Relationships in Animal Agriculture, Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics
  • 2019
    Betraying Animals, Journal of Ethics
  • 2017
    Imagined Utopias: Animal Rights and the Moral Imagination, Journal of Political Philosophy
  • 2017
    Animal Kingdoms: on habitat rights for wild animals, Environmental Values
  • 2014
    'Perpetual Strangers: animals and the cosmopolitan right, Political Studies
  • 2013
    Animal rights and environmental terrorism, Journal of Terrorism Research
  • 2011
    Duties to Companion Animals, Res Publica

Professional Memberships

  • Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts