Stumpf was born in Regensburg, Germany, and grew up in Straubing and Rothenburg ob der Tauber. He studied physics at the Universities of Tübingen, Sussex and Göttingen. Upon graduating with his diploma in physics, he went on to study as a graduate student at the University of Oxford, where he received his DPhil. in statistical physics in 1999. Whilst a graduate student he was a member of Balliol College. In 1999 Stumpf moved into biology and worked for three years at the Department of Zoology of the University of Oxford with Professor Robert May, Baron May of Oxford. During this time Stumpf held a fellowship at Linacre College. Since 2003 Stumpf has worked at the Centre for Bioinformatics at Imperial College, London. In 2007 Stumpf was appointed to the Chair of Theoretical Systems Biology at Imperial College, London, and in 2011 he was awarded the Rector's Medal for Excellence in Research Supervision.
Stumpf is married and lives in West London.
Stumpf’s research covers a variety of fields, including
- the analysis of complex biological networks, including protein interaction
- detection of regulatory elements using comparative genomics
- population genetics.