Eco-Islam: Beyond the Principles of Why and What, and Into the Principles of How

  • Dina M. Abdelzaher
  • Amr KotbEmail author
  • Akrum Helfaya
Original Paper


A growing body of literature has thought to draw the link between Islamic ethics and environmental stewardship to explain the foundational principles of why humans should care about the environment, which gave rise to the coining of the term “Eco-Islam”. But only recently have we started to witness the birth of empirical examinations of the Eco-Islam concept, going beyond the why principles and so explaining what is meant by the environment, the role of humans towards it, and its regard as explained in the holy book of Muslims—the Qur’an. However, these foundational (why and what) principles do not suggest specific behavioural actions. This study conceptually and methodologically advances the existing literature from the belief (why and what) level of Islamic teachings about the environment to the action level by addressing questions such as: how can we take our belief of “Eco-Islam” to actually guide behaviours and outcomes? And in which business contexts are these behavioural principles more immediately applicable? To achieve this, we have undertaken qualitative research to analyse the content (i.e. verses) of the holy Qur’an. Our findings yield a framework that proposes key behavioural application principles (how) of Eco-Islam. Examples of practical applications of the framework and policy implications are discussed.


Islam Environment Eco-Islam Individual responsibility Islamic environmental responsibility Sustainability 



The authors wish to express their warm thanks to the editor (Professor Domenec Mele), and the anonymous reviewers for their constructive comments and invaluable suggestions throughout the review process.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Houston Clear LakeHoustonUSA
  2. 2.Prince Sultan UniversityRiyadhSaudi Arabia
  3. 3.Cairo UniversityGizaEgypt
  4. 4.Keele UniversityKeeleUK
  5. 5.Damanhour UniversityDamanhourEgypt

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