Uncle Sam's obsession with DEI traced to powerful consulting firm

Uncle Sam's obsession with DEI traced to powerful consulting firm

Uncle Sam's obsession with DEI traced to powerful consulting firm

A new study says DEI-based ideology has expanded into tens of thousands of offices and boardrooms in the federal government, spreading the idea of promoting some people but punishing others based on race. A second study says the government did so based on a powerful firm's biased lobbying disguised as research.

A recent online story by The College Fix combined two stories into one: A study by the Fix, which found DEI ideology in 51 government agencies, and the findings of academic researchers who traced the government’s embrace of DEI to McKinsey and Company, a powerful international consulting firm.

The economists named in the Fix story are Alex Edmans, a professor at the London Business School, and Texas A&M accounting professor Jeremiah Green.   

College Fix associate editor Matt Lamb tells AFN the two economists pored over McKinsey’s studies and came away with questions about the methodology used to promote DEI as a useful tool to improve the workforce.

“As an example,” Lamb says, “one of the [McKinsey] studies claimed racial diversity among the leadership of a company led to higher profits.”

When the economist attempted to replicate the McKinsey study, however, the result was a big shock: McKinsey had cited corporate profit data that came before – not after – the corporations promoted workforce diversity.

The conclusion of Edmans and Green is the United States government demanded reasons to implement DEI and McKinsey delivered, according to The College Fix story. 

McKinsey, which is headquartered in New York City, reported $16 billion in revenue in 2023.

For this story, AFN found McKinsey and Company’s commitment to DEI on the corporation’s website, such as the “McKinsey Black Network” and “Equal and McKinsey” for “LGBTQ+” employees.

It's unclear if the powerful corporation is adhering to that commitment, however. According to a website about finding consultant jobs, McKinsey is known for a competitive recruiting process because it hires candidates with “Ivy League backgrounds and/or prestigious work histories.” 

Lamb, Matt (The College Fix) Lamb

In the Fix story, Edmans pointed out McKinsey provides consultation for its clients, not research. So the goal of McKinsey’s published papers, such as “Diversity Matters Even More,” is more like a marketing strategy for its clients rather than unbiased research.

After digging through several studies by McKinsey, Edmans ripped the consulting firm in a point-by-point critique he published in March.

Alarmed by McKinsey’s questionable research, the Fix began investigating how far DEI ideology has crept into executive branch of the federal government, which currently has 400-plus agencies and sub-agencies, and 3 million employees.

“What's more concerning,” Lamb tells AFN, “is that at least 51 different entities have cited these questionable studies, in various planning documents, stretching back to President Obama's administration."

At the U.S. Department of Labor, for example, the Biden administration is citing two McKinsey studies to justify “environmental, social, and governance criteria,” or ESG, according to The College Fix story.

At the U.S. Border Patrol, a DEI plan demands policies to “address under-representation” of women and minorities by the end of the 2026 fiscal year.

The College Fix says it has repeatedly asked McKinsey to respond to its story but has not heard back.