Chapter 1: The meaning and scope of business ethics in Islam
What are the common business ethics theories? Can these theories provide practical insights into ethical misconduct? Are there ethical guidelines that could prevent fraudulent behavior? Does Islam share a similar outlook on ethics with other monotheistic religions, especially Christianity and Judaism? Does the Islamic faith address ethical business issues? Does it provide guidelines that are sufficient and practical for preventing ethical misconduct? What are the implications of Islamic prescriptions for business people in a globalized world? These and other issues are addressed in this chapter. The objective is to identify, define, and present Islamic business ethics for business people and researchers alike. The chapter includes the most relevant early Islamic perspectives on market interactions and dealings. Furthermore, it sets the stage for identifying how to engage in purposeful conduct in the face of rising market entrapments and material allurements in the marketplace. The intensity and frequent occurrence of fraud and corruption in the marketplace in recent decades has accentuated the necessity and importance of delineating, clarifying, and identifying business ethics. Policymakers and business people across the globe have questioned increasing incidents of corruption and the persistency of deception despite stiff regulations and the rising vigilance of public agencies, especially in the Western world. The severity of the consequences of corruption, for both organizations and society, has encouraged market regulatory and civic actors to search for a suitable response to the rising challenges of corporate scandals and fraud.