Ms. Haiyan Qian

IMG_7544 Ms. Haiyan Qian, devoted wife, loving mother, and dedicated International Civil Servant for the United Nations, died on the morning of 18 February 2013 at the age of 57 after a heroic battle with cancer.

During the past 33 years, Ms. Qian dedicated her career to global public policy, governance, public administration and development. Since joining the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA), Ms. Qian has served as Chief Manager of the United Nations Public Administration Network (UNPAN),  Chief of the e-Government Branch (formerly known as Knowledge Management Branch) before becoming the Director of the Division for Public Administration and Development Management (DPADM) on 1 February 2009. Prior to joining UNDESA, Ms. Qian worked for other United Nations agencies, such as the Centre for Science and Technology for Development and UNEP’s Centre on Environmentally Sound Technology in Japan. Before joining the United Nations, Ms. Qian worked for  the Chinese Government in the area of science and technology for development and served in the Chinese Permanent Mission to the United Nations based in New York, covering the United Nations Second Committee on Economic and Social Affairs.

At the United Nations, Ms. Qian has left behind a legacy founded on hard work, dedicated service and loyalty. Ms. Qian was a visionary leader that was admired and respected by all her colleagues and others in the field of public administration around the world.

Ms. Qian received her Bachelor of Arts in Beijing, China and her Master in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, USA.

[click here to read this text in Chinese]

[click here to read the thank you letter from Ms. Haiyan Qian’s family]

332 Responses

  1. Hyam Al-Nashash, CEPA Member
    Hyam Al-Nashash, CEPA Member
    at · Reply

    This is a real loss to all of us.

    My deepest condolences to her family and team.

  2. Paul Oquist, CEPA Member
    Paul Oquist, CEPA Member
    at · Reply

    I wish to express my sincere sympathy for the family of Haiyan Qian
    as well as to all of her UNDESA family as well. This is a great loss
    for all of us.

    With Deepest Respects,

  3. Philip Yeo, CEPA member
    Philip Yeo, CEPA member
    at · Reply

    So sad.
    UN and CEPA has lost a champion in Haiyan Qian.

  4. Vilma Fernandes, DESA
    Vilma Fernandes, DESA
    at · Reply

    Even though, I did not know Haiyan personally, I have always heard about the remarkable staff member she was, both personally and professionally.
    We are all very sad to lose her and the UN indeed says good bye to one of its “champions” with a very heavy heart.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with Haiyan’s family and all who mourn her loss. May God comfort and console all of us and give us courage and strength to emulate Haiyan so that her legacy lives on not just in our memories but also in our spirit and deeds.
    With sincere condolences to all of you as we share your grief,

  5. Antoinette A. Samuel, ASPA
    Antoinette A. Samuel, ASPA
    at · Reply

    On behalf of the Board, members and staff of ASPA, we send our heartfelt condolences. We have lost a true stalwart of global good governance.

  6. Samir Bouggar
    Samir Bouggar
    at · Reply

    It is with greet sorrow that we leraned the demise of our beloved Ms.Haiyan Qian. She will always remains in our heart and be a model for a devoted and visionary leader of the public administartion around the world. Our sincere condoleances and sympathy for each member of her familly.

  7. Walter Fust, CEPA Member
    Walter Fust, CEPA Member
    at · Reply

    This is a very sad announcement and I express my heartfelt condolances to all the staff members and Mrs Qians family. May her soul rest in peace. I shall keep her devotion and her kindness in best memories. I shall miss her a lot.

  8. Francisco Longo, ESADE
    Francisco Longo, ESADE
    at · Reply

    Deeply shocked by the news. Rest in peace

  9. John Mary Kauzya
    at · Reply

    It is difficult for me to describe Haiyan. One had to know her, work with her and work under her supervision to really get to grasp what Haiyan represented and worked for in the United Nations. She was commitment itself, professionalism at its bet, integrity as one would want to see in a leader all the time, and persistence that leads to success in hard situations. It is one of the ironies of her life that we lose such an examplery officer, colleague and boss! Hopefully if we recall what she represented, we will work to emulllate her and make life live in the way we push forward!

  10. Wei LU, ISC, P.R. of China
    Wei LU, ISC, P.R. of China
    at · Reply

    The Internet Society of China (ISC) is greatly distressed and in profoundly sorrow on hearing the passing of Mrs. Haiyan QIAN. Please convey our deeply sympathy to her family, friends and colleagues.

  11. Lois Warner, DPADM
    Lois Warner, DPADM
    at · Reply

    My thoughts and prayers are with you at this difficult time.

  12. Rosalind Marx
    Rosalind Marx
    at · Reply

    I had the privilege of working with Haiyan, as a result of the United Nations restructuring that formed the Transnational Corporations and Management Division (UN Department of Economic and Social Development) (1992-1993). Although the period was brief, Haiyan left a deep imprint. As mentioned, by others, she was indeed a great person at the professional and the personal levels. She would always take the time to greet staff with such warmth and sincerity. She was a person of integrity and full of humanity. Her contribution to society, to her colleagues will not be forgotten but will sorely be missed. My deepest condolences to Haiyan’s family in their loss.

  13. LIU Chuang, Chinese Academy of Sciences
    LIU Chuang, Chinese Academy of Sciences
    at · Reply

    I am so sorry for Haiyan’s pass away. I, on behalf of all of our team of GAID e-SDDC (Enhancing Access to and Application of Scientific Data in Developing Countires, UNDESA GAID), am going to participate the memorial service next week in New York.

  14. Tarik Alami
    Tarik Alami
    at · Reply

    We were very sad to learn about the passing of the director Ms Haiyan Qian. She was indeed a great person at the professional and the personal levels. I was looking very much forward to seeing her this April during the CEPA meetings. May god bless her soul.

    Tarik Alami
    Emerging and Conflict Related Issues Division (ECRI)
    UN ESCWA – United Nations Economic and Social
    Commission for Western Asia

  15. Jana Ricasio
    Jana Ricasio
    at · Reply

    Deep condolences to Haiyan’s family, and to her DPADM family. She was a very dedicated professional.

  16. Valentina Resta
    Valentina Resta
    at · Reply

    Haiyan thought me an all colleagues in the Division many important and indelible lessons! I will always remember when she greeted each staff member in our Division in his/her own mother tongue. To do so, she had to memorize words in over 30 languages! Even for UN people who are used to diverse languages this was unique! She also took the time to know and speak to each of us making us feel equally important regardless of seniority levels. She was amazingly effective and devoted to the mission of the UN community. Through a combination of leading by example, trust, assertive encouragement and professional ism, she was able to stimulate all her collaborators to attain high performance, commitment but also pride for our collective work. The empowering and nurturing traits of her leadership will be her unforgettable legacy and a constant model for me.

  17. Elia Yi Armstrong
    Elia Yi Armstrong
    at · Reply

    Haiyan was a person of integrity, honesty and courage. She lived her values every day. She cared deeply about her colleagues and took a personal interest in each person. She was committed to the work of the UN and believed passionately in the potential of technological progress to improve governance and public administration and make a difference to people everywhere. She worked selflessly and tirelessly for the cause of development. I was inspired by and learned a lot from Haiyan, both professionally and personally. She will be sorely missed, but her indomitable spirit will live on in the Division.

  18. Hiro
    at · Reply

    Haiyan had been a great friend before she she joined UN and became colleagues at science and technology. We shared a lot of happy moments together, including both our families, as well as worked together in many different professional circumstances. Haiyan will surely be missed but she’ll always remain in our hearts.

  19. Helen Valencia
    Helen Valencia
    at · Reply

    I am very sorry to hear of Haiyan’s passing. My deep condolences to her friends and family.

  20. Dimitri Vlassis
    Dimitri Vlassis
    at · Reply

    I was shocked by Haiyan’s passing and would like to convey to you and her other colleagues my most heartfelt condolences.

    at · Reply

    My heart always with Ms Qian. When I was one of the CEPA’s member, Mr Qian always provided a great help. May her soul rest in peace in the garden of Allah.

  22. Surakij Vuthikornpant
    Surakij Vuthikornpant
    at · Reply

    Hello,sir.And Peace be upon you.
    I just want to show my sympathy & compassion to Ms. Haiyan Qian, died on the morning of 18 February 2013 at the age of 57 after a heroic battle with cancer.

    I feel deeply deeply sympathy & compassion to her & to her family too,sir.
    And surely she alreadys into the light & rejoin with my “God” in Peace by now.

    Thank you very much,sir.
    Sincerely & faithfully.
    Surakij Vuthikornpant

  23. G.K Scott-Secretary General (African Association for Public Administration and management (AAPAM)
    G.K Scott-Secretary General (African Association for Public Administration and management (AAPAM)
    at · Reply

    It is with deep sadness that we at the African Association for Public Administration and Management (AAPAM) learn of the passing of Ms Haiyan Qian. We clearly remember how she was very anxious in trying to find means for supporting our activities and to make us very active and vigorous. She held a special meeting with our representatives during the last meeting of UN experts in Public Administration in New York in 2012. It is a big loss to us and we shall remember her vividly. We extend our condolence to the family

  24. Charles Henri Bara
    at · Reply

    Je me permets d’exprimer mes sympathies les plus profondes suite à la disparition de Mme Haiyan Qian Directeur de UNPAN.
    Mme Qiam restera à jamais gravé dans nos mémoires, nous garderons d’elle l’image de la femme combattante. Je voudrais au nom de l’IDEP, témoigner mes sentiments douloureux à sa famille et également à tous les membres d’UNPAN qui ont perdu une grande Femme.
    Je me permets aussi d’exprimer mes profonds respects à ses honorables accomplissements tout au long de sa carrière professionnelle.

  25. Zoubir Soussi Takati
    at · Reply

    Ms. Haiyan Qian was as a great leader willing to help others. She was and always will be an inspiration.

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