Maqasid Al-Shariah, SDGs and the Ottoman Waqf

The Ottoman awqaf addressed societal concerns far beyond the SDGs. People were born in waqf property, educated in waqf schools, worked in waqf enterprises, received medical treatment in waqf hospitals and were buried in waqf lands. During my research into the alignment of SDGs with the Maqasid al-Shariah (MaS) and how the awqaf sector can…

Setting a Maqasid-Driven Development Agenda for Islamic Finance – IV

More importantly, we examine how Islamic social finance in general and awqaf in particular can play a role in operationalizing the areas of alignment between MaS and SDGs. We also develop a comprehensive database of existing waqf-based initiatives across the globe with a view to documenting good practices by awqaf in meeting MaS as well…

Setting a Maqasid-Driven Development Agenda for Islamic Finance – III

The specific MaS corollaries that capture a clear spiritual and religious dimension could not be mapped to the SDGs that are faith-neutral, rooted in materialistic as well as moral considerations, and are mostly borne out of repeated market failures to address societal concerns. The Islamic vision of development has its origins in the Quran and…

Setting a Maqasid-Driven Development Agenda for Islamic Finance – II

If we want to juxtapose Maqasid-driven actions along with SDG-driven actions in the same two-dimensional space, a realistic approach would be to use spiritual gains and moral or ethical gains interchangeably. In this second part of the series on Setting a Maqasid-Driven Development Agenda for Islamic Finance, we continue our discussion on material gains versus…

Setting a Maqasid-Driven Development Agenda for Islamic Finance – I

With an expanded scope we propose to examine the alignment or misalignment between MaS and SDGs further down the hierarchy of goals. Highlighting areas of alignment are no less important than areas of misalignment. Our last publication on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) from a Shariah Perspective was motivated by the observed reluctance of Islamic financial…

Expanding the Virtuous Cycle of Benevolence through Cash-Waqf-Linked-Sukuk

With the success of such experiments, the realization that Islamic social funds can play a crucial role in meeting development finance needs of the economy will continue to grow. And simultaneously, we can look forward to a continuous expansion in the virtuous circle of benevolence. In a blog based on my presentation at the International…

Artificial Intelligence (AI) through the Lens of Islamic Economics – VI

We underline some data privacy related guidelines and principles that do not violate the basic beliefs and culture of Islamic societies. They merit serious consideration by zakat and Islamic non-profit organizations, especially that have gone digital, where the beneficiary is usually in a weak bargaining position. The narrative “data is new oil”, is frequently used…

Artificial Intelligence (AI) through the Lens of Islamic Economics – V

We can take comfort with the forecast that AI will firmly stay within human control and conveniently, trash the forecast of some that machines will become incomprehensibly smarter than humans with artificial super intelligence (ASI). However, in the event ASI materializes, it will be beyond our control. We can only hope that, before the inevitable…

Artificial Intelligence (AI) through the Lens of Islamic Economics – IV

Text analysis may be useful, for instance, for a waqf organization to know what the neighborhood feels about the public goods (education, healthcare, orphan care etc.) it provides. An association of zakat organizations in a country concerned about a high rate of “donor attrition” may feel the need for a “feel-good analysis” of donors. A…

Artificial Intelligence (AI) through the Lens of Islamic Economics – III

When a poor and needy individual (faqir/ miskeen) is wrongly classified as non-poor and deprived of zakat (a case of false-negative) or a rich is wrongly classified as poor and receives zakat (a case of false-positive), it involves ethical dilemmas of varying order. Of course, there are in-built mechanisms within the classification models to address…