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How Islamic are Islamic Countries?

Author

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  • Rehman Scheherazade S.

    () (The George Washington University)

  • Askari Hossein

    () (The George Washington University)

Abstract

In the post 9/11 era, there is growing interest in the complex relationship between religion, economics, finance, politics, law, and social behavior. This has brought with it a disagreement on how to investigate the impact of religiosity, whether religion affects the economic, political, and social outlook of countries or whether these factors affect religiosity? In other words, should religion be viewed as a dependent or an independent variable? In this paper we ask what we believe to be the precursor question to such linkages, namely, do self-declared Islamic countries, as attested by membership in the OIC (Organization of Islamic Conference), embrace policies that are founded on Islamic teachings? We believe that only once this question is addressed can one begin to estimate how Islam adherence to Islam may affect economic, political and social behavior. In the first part of the paper we present what we believe should be the characteristics and scaffolding of an Islamic" country. We base our depiction on the Quran, and the life, practices and sayings of the Prophet Mohammad -- the two principal channels that provide Muslims with the road map. In the second part, we develop an index to measure the Islamicity" of Islamic and non-Islamic countries. This IslamicityIndex (or I2) measures 208 countries adherence to Islamic principles using four sub-indices related to economics, legal and governance, human and political rights, and international relations.

Suggested Citation

  • Rehman Scheherazade S. & Askari Hossein, 2010. "How Islamic are Islamic Countries?," Global Economy Journal, De Gruyter, vol. 10(2), pages 1-40, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:bpj:glecon:v:10:y:2010:i:2:n:2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Corrigenda [Introduction to the Economics of Religion]," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 1941-1941.
    2. Elsa V. Artadi & Xavier Sala-i-Martin, 2003. "The Economic Tragedy of the XXth Century: Growth in Africa," NBER Working Papers 9865, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Rachel M. McCleary & Robert J. Barro, 2006. "Religion and Economy," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, pages 49-72.
    4. Laurence R. Iannaccone, 1998. "Introduction to the Economics of Religion," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, pages 1465-1495.
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    Cited by:

    1. Raphie Hayat & Frank Butter & Udo Kock, 2013. "Halal Certification for Financial Products: A Transaction Cost Perspective," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, pages 601-613.
    2. Sabur Mollah & M. Kabir Hassan & Omar Farooque & Asma Mobarek, 2017. "The governance, risk-taking, and performance of Islamic banks," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer;Western Finance Association, pages 195-219.
    3. Hinloopen, Jeroen & Müller, Wieland & Normann, Hans-Theo, 2014. "Output commitment through product bundling: Experimental evidence," European Economic Review, Elsevier, pages 164-180.
    4. Azmat, Saad & Skully, Michael & Brown, Kym, 2017. "The (little) difference that makes all the difference between Islamic and conventional bonds," Pacific-Basin Finance Journal, Elsevier, pages 46-59.
    5. Syed Ali, Salman & Hasan, Hamid, 2014. "Towards a Maqasid al-Shariah based Development Index," Working Papers 1435-18, The Islamic Research and Teaching Institute (IRTI).
    6. Murat Çokgezen, 2016. "Islamic economics in real life: Do Muslims give more than the others?," Working Papers hal-01349872, HAL.

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