Prof. em. Dr.

Markus Schwaninger

Professor em. of Management


  • Management of complex dynamic systems
  • System Dynamics – modeling and simulation
  • Organisational Cybernetics

Fields of Research

  • Integrative Management
  • Organization Design
  • Transformation and learning of organizations
  • Organisational intelligence
  • Model-based management


Markus Schwaninger is a professor emeritus at the Institute of Management and Strategy, University of St.Gallen. He studied at the Universities of Salzburg, St. Gallen and Innsbruck (degree Dr.soc.oec.). Habilitation at the University of St. Gallen, then Associate Professor of Management. Visiting professorships in Brazil (Fundação Getúlio Vargas, São Paulo) and Colombia (Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá). Visiting Scholar in the US (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge; Columbia University, New York), Canada (University of British Columbia, Vancouver) and Spain (Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas).

Work Experience

Before his academic career, professional activities in industries and the public sector (Austria, Switzerland, Bermuda, Brazil) as well as consultancy (St. Gallen Management Center). Consulting and training mandates worldwide in a broad spectrum of organizations, e.g., health, manufacturing, public and development organizations. At the University of St. Gallen he was the long-standing director of the “integration seminars” and the doctoral program of the Management department (later: School of Management). Commitment in transdisciplinary, mostly international research projects. Director, World Organization of Systems and Cybernetics (WOSC). Managing Editor, System Dynamics Review. Contribution to several advisory councils (e.g., member and chair of the advisory council of the student initiative OIKOS) and editorial boards.

Further Information

He has supervised about 90 doctoral dissertation Projects, as a first or second referee. He founded the System Dynamics Group, a research unit for modeling and simulation, at the Institute of Management, University of St. Gallen. He is committed to the professional discourse in his fields of research, in the international context: as a referee for dissertations at Swiss and foreign universities, as an expert for funding institutions, and as a reviewer for multiple journals. In addition, he contributes to many conferences, as organizer of streams and workshops as well as speaker and presenter. His publishing record amounts to more than 200 titles. His most-cited publications include:

  • Schwaninger M & Schoenenberger L (2022) Cybernetic Crisis Management in a Federal System – Insights from the Covid Pandemic. Systems Research and Behavioral Science, Vol. 39:3–20.
  • Tuckermann H & Schwaninger M (eds.) (2022) Wege aus der COVID-19-Krise. Anamnese, Diagnose und Design. Bern: Haupt. ISBN: 978-3-258-08271-4
  • Schwaninger M & Groesser S (2020) System Dynamics Modeling: Validation for Quality Assurance In: Dangerfield B (ed.) System Dynamics.Theory and Applications. A Volume in the Encyclopedia of Complexity and Systems Science. Second Edition. Springer, New York, pp. 119-138.
  • Schwaninger M (2020) System Dynamics in the Evolution of the Systems Approach. In: Dangerfield B (ed.) System Dynamics. Theory and Applications. A Volume in the Encyclopedia of Complexity and Systems Science. Second Edition. Springer, New York, pp. 21-39.
  • Schwaninger M (2019) Cybersystemic education: enabling society for a better future. Kybernetes 48(7): 1376-1397.
  • Schwaninger M (2018) Systemic Design for Sustainability. Sustainability Science, Volume 13(5): 1225-1234.
  • Schwaninger M (2016) A test of the Viable System Model: theoretical claim vs. empirical evidence. Cybernetics and Systems: An International Journal.
  • Schwaninger M (2015) Model-based Management: A cybernetic concept. Systems Research and Behavioral Science 32: 564–578.
  • Schwaninger M (2012) Making change happen: recollections of a systems professional. Kybernetes 41(3/4): 348 – 367.
  • Schwaninger M (2009) Intelligent organizations – powerful models for systemic management, 2nd edition. Berlin: Springer, 2009 (1st edition 2006).
  • Schwaninger M & Groesser S (2008) System Dynamics as model-based theory-building. Systems Research and Behavioral Science 25 (4): 447-465.