GRM 2010 GRM 2011

Abstract Details

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The Searching for the Hub of Ethical Finance: Islamic Financial Services and the World City Networks
Paper Proposal Text :
Islamic financial services (IFSs) sector which is rapidly developing in the Middle East cities as well as growing in the South East Asian cities like Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta; and notably in the mainstream International Financial Centres (IFCs) such as London and New York. Currently these cities are said to be the ‘command and control’ centres of the global economy because they harbour advanced producers services (APS) firms which need to manage increasingly complex production networks. This paper draws an analysis of rapidly expanding IFSs sector through a study of how cities are being connected through the intra-firm networks which provide Shari‘ah-compliant financial services. It is argued that a focus on the globalisation of Islamic financial services (IFS) sector may provide an alternative to hegemonic imaginations of world city-formation through its focuses on globalising economic process. The relevance of such analysis is discussed against the conceptual backdrop of the world city network literature. Based on information on the location strategies of 27 leading IFS firms in 47 cities across the world and employing the methodology on ‘globalisation and world city network’ (GaWC), the results show that globalisation within the Muslim world follows a unique urban trajectory, thereby creating a network of powerful cities. The results also show that Middle East is at the apex of the IFSs sector and Manama is identified the hub of the IFS sector which other major cities such as Amman, Dubai, Doha, Jeddah, Karachi, Kuala Lumpur and Kuwait and Riyadh etc. are also primary nodes in the city network. Outside the Muslim world, London is increasingly profiling itself as a global Islamic financial service (IFS) hub.