Skip to main content

Prof. Hugh Lambe: The tipping point that would change business ethics

Meet your Professors

Professor Hugh Lambe

As a professor in UofGH’s business program, there is one topic Hugh Lambe is sure to include in his teaching, regardless of course.  “Ethics has evolved into an area of great importance within business life,” he says.

He recalls a period during the 1980s, when the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission started to examine the practices of investment firms, in particular those on Wall St.  “They uncovered a lot of unethical practices.  A number of high profile Wall St. executives were convicted of insider trading.  We saw a loss of investor confidence in the financial markets.”

Then, more financial scandals in the U.S. with far-reaching consequences.

“Enron, WorldCom and Tyco – these companies produced false financial statements which investors relied on.”

Then, the tipping point.

In the early 2000s, the U.S. enacted the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which most notably put increased liability and accountability on senior management.  Prof. Lambe:  “This changed the entire structure of corporate accountability.  It was an immense change.  As a result, similar provisions were placed here in Ontario, in the Ontario Securities Act.”

He continues:  “Students are entering into a much different landscape.  Today, there are a number of rules set out in governmental statutes, including securities acts, corporations acts, environmental protection acts.”

“Ethics no longer limits itself to the investment industry.  Regardless of area of business our students might find themselves in their careers, ethics will simply be a part of life.”


Hugh Lambe received his Honour B.A. in Political Science and Economics from the University of Toronto, his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Toronto Law School and a Master of Laws from Duke University Law School, North Carolina.

He is an internationally qualified lawyer, as well as a Chartered Financial Analyst.


International law and taxation
Estate planning
Securities law compliance
International contracts for global investments