1st International Ibn Khaldun Symposium

Economic Theory of Ibn Khaldun and Rise and Fall of Nations

Selim Cafer Karataş

Last modified: 07-09-2017

Abstract (400-500 words)

Ibn khaldun is a fourteenth century Muslim thinker who has written on many subjects, including on the rise and fall of nations in his Muqaddimah: An Introduction to History. His writings on economics, economic surplus and economic oriented policies are as relevant today as they were during his time. His emphasis on less government expenditure for mercenary army has been heard by many developed countries which are in the process of implementing his policy prescriptions in order to increase economic surplus by shifting resources to education and human development. He opposed taxation and tariffs that discouraged trade and production. Ibn Khaldun opposed state involvement in trade and production activities. He thought the bureaucrats can not understand commercial activities and they do not have the same motivations as tradesmen. He predicts relative fall of economic surplus and the decline of the countries in which state involves in trade and production. He sees a large army as impediment to the expansion of trade, production and economic surplus. The common sense economics of Ibn Khaldun is now understood slowly by lees developed countries. The privatization tendencies in these countries is a beginning. However, Developed countries are aiming to reduce military oriented investments and expenditures in order to invest more in education and technology to increase economic performances of their private enterprises in international markets. Furthermore, the same industrial countries have followed concessionary taxation policies conducive for trade and production. These policies and many other economic policies which this paper aims to reflect have been policy prescriptions of Ibn Khaldun for a civilized society.


Ibn Khaldun; Economic theory; Rise and fall of nations

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