Yusuf M. Sidani
Olayan School of Business, American University of Beirut, Ras Beirut, Lebanon Abstract
Purpose – This paper’s purpose is to present the works of a North African early contributor to sociological theory, Ibn Khaldun (1332-1406), specifically pertaining to his conceptualization of leadership and the role of asabiya (group feeling) in leadership emergence. Design/methodology/approach – The paper reviews the Muqadimmah, (Prolegomena or the introduction), which contained his most important views of the issue.
Findings – The paper develops an early model of leadership as described by Ibn Khaldun. This research study presents a different understanding of leadership that has applicability in a different era and in a different culture. The paper summarizes Ibn Khaldun’s views on human nature, how
leadership emerges, and the role of group feeling or asabiya in leadership situations.
Practical implications – The paper presents some implications of Ibn Khaldun’s work for understanding leadership dynamics in a non-western cultural context. It is suggested here that many of Ibn Khaldun’s leadership propositions have particular significance for several non-Western
societies especially in the Middle East and North Africa.
Originality/value – The paper argues, that leadership research could benefit from the contributions of Ibn Khaldun in developing models that take different cultures into perspective.
Keywords Leadership, North Africa, Islam
Paper type Research paper Continue reading →
Islam is a religion that unites both spiritual and temporal aspects of life. It regulates not only an individual’s relationship with God, but also human relationships in social and financial settings. Thus, the Sharia, or the Islamic Law, is part of every Muslim’s cultural, social and behavioral identity.
The application of Sharia to investment choices and management is not a new phenomenon. Earlier Muslims were able to establish an interest-free financial system for mobilizing resources to finance productive activities and consumer needs, which had worked effectively for centuries. As Muslim societies became more sophisticated, and their financing needs more complex coupled with stagnating Islamic thought evolution, the Islamic-based financial system was gradually replaced by the interest-based system in recent times. The contemporary increasing desire of Muslims to bring their modern economic and financial activity to conform again with their cherished religious values and beliefs, has led to a growing interest in Islamic-approved Investment vehicles.
The wider acceptance of equity investments by Sharia scholars in the early 1990s paved the way to launch mutual funds that operates in compliance to the ethical guidelines of the Islamic Law (hereafter in this paper will be called Islamic mutual funds). According to the London-based Institute of Islamic Banking and Insurance, there are over 250 Islamic institutions in some 75 countries that are managing funds worth over USD $200 billion. In the early 1990s, many Sharia-compliant mutual funds started to appear. There are now about 126 funds with
approximately USD $4 billion in assets under management. Other than being a halal (Approved in Islamic Sharia) investment alternative available for Muslim investors, the funds also respond to the specific need for more liquid investment tools (…)