Open Access

Foundations and Challenges: Ethics in Consulting


This paper critically examines the principle of professional independence in the consulting industry, focusing on ethical challenges through the lenses of consequentialism and stakeholder theory. Utilizing a case study involving a Dutch media company’s acquisition bid, the analysis reveals the tension between maintaining professional independence and succumbing to client pressures, resulting in an inflated and ultimately unsuccessful bid. The discussion highlights the importance of consultants adhering to ethical standards, considering all stakeholders’ interests, and maintaining objectivity to ensure long-term beneficial outcomes. By integrating stakeholder theory and consequentialism, the paper underscores the necessity of ethical rigor and professional integrity in consulting practices.