The escalating social and economic problems brought about by globalization have raised new questions as well as expectations about corporate governance, ethical and social responsibilities. Consequently, corporate social responsibility (CSR) has emerged and developed rapidly as a field of study. Many Western theoreticians have attempted to provide theoretical, moral and ethical groundings for CSR initiatives. However, these attempts have been widely criticized for problems relating to justification, conceptual clarity and possible inconsistency, and for failing to give adequate ethical guidance to business executives who must decide which courses to pursue and with how much commitment. The main objective of this paper is to study the concept of CSR, which has gained popularity and wide acceptance amongst the Western business community from an Islamic perspective. It discusses the Islamic alternative to the various theories underpinning CSR. The Islamic perspective, which prevailed within the ambit of Shari'ah, should be influential in the thinking and behaviour of the world's 1.6 billion Muslims.
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