Conference Papers, The 7th International Conference in Islamic Economics: Thirty Years of Research in Islamic Economics, Jeddah: 1-3 April 2008, pp. 123-134
Abstract: At the dawn of the fifteenth century Hijri, two universities International Islamic University of Islamabad (IIUI) and International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM) were launched with the mission of integrating the Islamic world view and all modern branches of knowledge. An important portion of this mission was the production of a body of knowledge to be known as “Islamic Economics.”
This would provide an alternative to conventional moderneconomic theory which is based on interest and on the concept of homo economicus, both of which are alien to Islamic ideals. The object of this note is to review the experience of International Institute of Islamic Economics (IIIE), one of the key departments of IIUI. Our goal is to learn from this experience so as to advance the project more efficiently in the future. We will discuss the successes so as to be able to build on them, and also the failures, so as to avoid them.
Published in: Lahore Journal of Policy Studies Vol. 2 No. 1, June 2008.
Abstract: How do we arrest the decline of the social sciences in Pakistan? Is it a matter of money or one of sending more students to the West who might then return to teaching at the local universities? In this article I argue that the solution lies elsewhere. Borrowing frames, concepts, and analytical techniques based on the concept of universalism runs a serious risk of imposing alien views on local problems. Moreover, attempts to become ‘scientific’ require side stepping value judgments of good and bad. The current Western domination of the intellectual scene favours a single route for social science development, and kills all diversity. However, whilst we may borrow as much as we choose, we need to build our own frames that would underpin the social sciences, and this is possible only by reconnecting with our own past.