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Dr. Martin Pfiffner

Pfäffikon, Switzerland
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Dr. MartinPfiffner Pfiffner

Martin Pfiffner lives in Pfäffikon (ZH). He is married and has a daughter. In the 1990s, he studied economics at the University of St. Gallen (HSG) and earned his doctorate. At the time, he served as an assistant to professors Peter Gross (sociology, multi-option society) and Fredmund Malik (systems-oriented management theory). Later he studied in Canada and in Wales with Professor Stafford Beer, the pioneer of management-cybernetics.

Pfiffner is one of the world’s leading experts on the practical implementation of the Viable System Model and Syntegration. Over the last thirty years, he has advised numerous economic, public, and private entities across the world, helping them get back on track and achieve success. His work centers on “The third dimension of organization,” which he defines as the neurology of an organization. His most recent book is The Neurology of Business: Implementing the Viable System Model (2022). Pfiffner argues that this neurology, rather than organization charts or business processes, determines whether a company is viable.

Until recently, Pfiffner managed Team Syntegrity Europe AG. He was head of the innovation group “Management Cybernetics & Bionics Division” at the Management Center St. Gallen and also responsible for developing management bionics. He is a founding member and curator of the International Bionic Center IBZ in Munich. He also initiated the Cwarel-Isaf-Conferences for management cyberneticists from all over the world.

For many years, he lectured at the University of St.Gallen (HSG), sharing his knowledge of applied management cybernetics. Between 2011 and 2016, he served on the board of the Swiss Society for Organization and Management. He is a Fellow of the Cybernetic Society England (CybSoc), a member of the International Society for System Sciences (ISSS), and an active member of Metaphorum, a society dedicated to studying the life and work of Stafford Beer. In 2017, together with several friends, he launched the Fondation Oroborus to promote management cybernetics.

Dr. Pfiffner can be contacted at or on LinkedIn at:

Profile created 7 February 2023

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