Stuart Umpleby

Stuart Umpleby

Stuart Umpleby

Professor Emeritus of Management


Office Phone: (202) 994-0805
2201 G Street NW, Suite 212 Washington, D.C. 22052

Stuart A. Umpleby is a professor emeritus of management at the George Washington University School of Business (GWSB). He received degrees in engineering, political science, and communications from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Umpleby has published articles in Science, Policy Sciences, Population and Environment, Science Communication, Futures, World Futures, the Journal of Aesthetic Education, Simulation and Games, Business and Society Review, Telecommunications Policy, Journal of the Washington Academy of Sciences, Reflexive Control, Systems Practice, Kybernetes, Cybernetics and Human Knowing, Cybernetics and Systems and several foreign language journals.

He is a past president of the American Society for Cybernetics. He is Associate Editor of the journal Cybernetics and Systems. Umpleby has received research grants from the National Science Foundation, the Charles F. Kettering Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the Central Asia Research Initiative. He has consulted with the World Bank, with government agencies in the U.S. and Canada and with corporations in the U.S., Europe, Japan, and China. He has been a guest scholar at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria, the University of Vienna, the Institute for Advanced Studies in Vienna and the University of St. Gallen in St. Gallen, Switzerland.

In spring 2004, he was a Fulbright Scholar in the School of Economics and Business, University of Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina. Between 1981 and 1988, Umpleby was the American coordinator of a series of meetings between American and Russian scientists to discuss the foundations of cybernetics and systems theory. These meetings were supported by the Russian Academy of Sciences and the American Council of Learned Societies. His interest in the transitions in the post-communist countries has resulted in his presenting lectures at various institutes of the Academies of Science of Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Hungary, Bulgaria, and China. He received the Norbert Wiener Award of the American Society for Cybernetics. He is currently serving as president of the Executive Committee of the International Academy for Systems and Cybernetic Sciences.

  • President of the American Society for Cybernetics, January 1980 to December 1982.
  • Program coordinator for the first Gordon Research Conference on Cybernetics, August 1984.
  • American coordinator of a series of panels and small conferences on the subject of cybernetics and systems theory involving scientists from the United States and the Soviet Union, 1981 to 1988.  These meetings were funded by the American Council of Learned Societies and the Soviet Academy of Sciences.
  • Local arrangements chairman of the first public conference of the Electronic Networking Association, Washington, DC, November, 1985.
  • Reviewer of proposals submitted to the National Science Foundation, the Division of Information Science and Technology and the Division of Science Education, Development and Research, 1980s.
  • Associate Editor of Cybernetics and Systems.  Member of the editorial board of Systems Research and Behavioral Science.  Reviewer of papers submitted to the journals Technological Forecasting and Social Change, and Systemic Practice and Action Research.
  • Reviewer of manuscripts for Taylor and Francis Publishing Co. and Plenum Publishing Co.
  • Chairman of a conference on “Theories to Guide the Reform of Socialist Societies,”  February 2-3, 1990, George Washington University, Washington, D.C.
  • Co-chair of symposia on the Cybernetics of Country Development held during the European Meetings on Cybernetics and Systems Research, Vienna, Austria, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998.
  • Chair of symposia on Management and Organizational Change held during the European Meetings on Cybernetics and Systems Research, Vienna, Austria, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010.
  • Organizer and Moderator of a University Seminar on Reflexive Systems, 2006 to present. The seminar meets once a month during the academic year and is attended by students and faculty members and people from the Washington area.
  • 2003 Phi Beta Delta, Honor Society for International Scholars
  • 2004 Fulbright Scholarship, University of Sarajevo, Bosnia-Herzegovina
  • 2007 Norbert Wiener Award of the American Society for Cybernetics
  • 2009 Outstanding Faculty Service Award, GWU Office of Community Service
  • 2010 Academician in the International Academy of Systems and Cybernetic Sciences, an honor society created by the International Federation for Systems Research
  • Cybernetics
  • Systems Science
  • Complexity
  • Reflexivity
  • 1962-67: A.B., Political Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
  • 1962-67: B.S., Mechanical Engineering, UIUC
  • 1967-69: A.M., Political Science, UIUC
  • 1969-75: Ph.D., Communications, UIUC



  • Umpleby, Stuart. “2018 Annual Report on the Activities of the International Academy for Systems and Cybernetic Sciences” (Paper) (Slides)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “Reflexivity in Social Systems: The Theories of George Soros” (Paper) (Slides)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “Identifying Stability or Instability in Economic Systems” (Paper) (Slides)
  • Bricage, Pierre. “A Systemic Vision of the Crises” European Union for Systemics, Brussels, Belgium, Oct. 15-17, 2018. (Abstracts)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “Philosophies Underlying Systems and Cybernetics in Several Countries” (Slides)
  • Metcalf, Gary S. and Stuart A. Umpleby. “Rating and Ranking Universities, What Criteria are most Aligned with Creating T-Shaped Faculty and Students?” (Paper)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “A Global Strategy for Human Development: Another Way to do Social Science Research” (Slides)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “New Horizons for Second Order Cybernetics: Introducing a Book Edited by Alexander Riegler, Karl H. Mueller and Stuart Umpleby” (Slides)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “Expanding Science and Advancing Reflexive Government: Two Current Projects in Cybernetics” (Paper)
  • Umpleby, Stuart. “The Early Years of Computer-based Communication: An Amazon Review of 'The Friendly Orange Glow: The Untold Story of the Plato System and the Dawn of Cyberculture' by Brian Dear” (Book Review)
  • Umpleby, Stuart, Tatiana A. Medvedeva and Vladimir E. Lepskiy. “Recent Developments in Cybernetics, from Cognition to Social Systems” (Paper)