Chapter 2: Islamic Ethics and Marketing
Abbas J. Ali The increasing acceptance of the multistakeholder concept in business practices constitutes a major milestone in the world of business. It highlights the significant contributions of organizations to society and gives credibility to the notion that at the end, it is society that grants legitimacy to any organization. Among business functions, marketing plays a pivotal role in the society. The marketing function is a ‘social institution that is highly adaptive to its cultural and political context’ (Wilkie and Moore, 2007). This reality, along with current global business developments, underscores the strategic link between cultural ethics and marketing. Societies espouse various ethical principles which are assumed to be prioritized differently depending on cultural preferences and the importance attached to each. The evolution of business ethics in a culture is influenced by many factors including the stage of economic development, religion and openness. The interplay of these factors shapes how people in certain societies and time periods deal with business issues and emerging or pressing events. Religion, however, remains a determining force in ethics formation and application. Indeed, each religion has its own set of values and beliefs which in turn determines what is considered right and wrong and the standards upon which a behavior/ conduct is judged; in short, the application of values and beliefs to reality is ethics. The elaboration of ethical prescriptions appears to differ across religions. Some religions, like Judaism and Islam, have detailed ethical instructions and treatises based in revelation. Others may have brief specifications...
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