Reward allocation decision making in Arab-Islamic business organizations: An empirical examination through an emic lens

Alexandre Anatolievich Bachkirov*, Faridahwati Mohd Shamsudin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate monetary reward allocation decision-making in an Arab-Islamic business environment. Design/methodology/approach: In this mixed-method (quantitative/qualitative) study, data were obtained from a sample of 342 practicing managers of different genders and educational levels working in different industries at different organizational levels in Oman. Findings: The more individualistic personal orientation, the more likely the decision makers are to allocate the biggest reward to the best performer and to believe that the equity principle is best for distributing rewards. In the context of a society transitioning from collectivistic to individualistic cultural values, the level of education is associated with preference for the equity principle in reward allocations. Research limitations/implications: The reported findings advance the theoretical understanding of how an emic perspective can explain reward allocation decision-making in Arab-Islamic environment. Practical implications: Practical implications of this study lie in the guidance that global managers can draw regarding which allocation principle to use in which cultural context: the principle of equity – not equality, need or seniority – is embraced by organizations in the Arabian Gulf. Originality/value: The study examines reward allocation decision-making behavior in the under-researched context of the Arabian Gulf and adds to the body of knowledge based on data obtained from practicing managers rather than college students.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)536-553
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Islamic and Middle Eastern Finance and Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 17 2017


  • Arab-Islamic
  • Collectivism versus individualism
  • Decision making beliefs and behaviours
  • Emic perspective
  • Reward allocation decision making

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Finance


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