Defining Islamic accounting: Current issues, past roots

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2765 Downloads (Pure)


The emergence of Islamic banks and other financial institutions since the 1970s has stimulated a modern literature of that has identified itself as addressing “Islamic accounting”. Much of this literature is prescriptive, though studies of actual practice, and of attitudes to proposed alternatives, are beginning to emerge. Historical research into Islamic accounting is still in a process of development, with a range of studies based on both primary archives and manuals of accounting providing growing insight into accounting in state and private contexts in the Middle East. Other parts of the Muslim world are also the focus of historical accounting research. There is still much to discover, however, before historians can determine the influence of Middle Eastern accounting ideas and practices in other parts of the world. Moreover, the term “Islamic accounting” may simply be a convenient label to group together quite disparate accounting practices and ideas across time and space.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-144
JournalAccounting History
Issue number1/2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2009


  • Islamic accounting
  • History of accounting
  • Origins of double-entry
  • Arabic manuals of secretaryship
  • Merdiban method of accounting

Cite this