Stefan Thurner is full professor for Science of Complex Systems at the Medical University of Vienna, where he founded the Complex Systems Research Group (now Section for Science of Complex Systems) in 2003. Since 2007 he is external professor at the Santa Fe institute.
After his PhD in theoretical physics at the Technical University of Vienna in 1995 he held postdoc research positions at Humboldt Universität zu Berlin and Boston University before he joined the University of Vienna in 1999 and later Medical University. In 2001 he got a second PhD in economics at the University of Vienna and his Habilitation in theoretical physics. About this time - strongly influenced by visits to the Santa Fe Institute - he began to shift his focus from theoretical physics to biological and complex systems, which are now his main areas of scientific work.
Since 1995 Thurner has published more than 120 scientific articles in fundamental physics (topological excitations in quantum field theories, alternative entropy formulations), applied mathematics (wavelet statistics, fractal harmonic analysis, diffusion processes), complex systems(network theory, evolutionary systems), life sciences (heart beat dynamics, gene regulatory networks, cell motility, bioinformatics), econophysics (price formation, banking regulation, systemic risk) and lately in social sciences (opinion formation and buerocratic inefficiency). He holds 2 patents.
Thurner has (co-) organized several international workshops, conferences and summerschools, and has himself presented more than 150 talks. His work has received broad interest from the media such as the New York Times, BBC world, Nature, New Scientist, Physics World and is featured in more than 100 newspaper, radio and television reports. He works in a network of scientists mostly around the Santa Fe Institute, the Collegium Budapest, where he was a fellow in 2007, and several European initiatives, such as COST actions, where he serves as the Austrian delegate. Thurner serves as a member of several scientific boards.
Apart from science Thurner has been active in quantitative financial consulting for financial institutions since 2003 in particular for automated trading strategies. In 1993 he founded a non-professional chamber music group for which he still plays the clarinet.