UNITED NATIONS, Feb. 7 (Xinhua) -- The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) chief on Tuesday mourned the death of Hans Rosling, a Swedish medical doctor, statistician and academic, calling him "a friend to the world's children."
Rosling "was not only a friend to his colleagues at UNICEF; he was a friend to the world's children," Anthony Lake, the executive director of the UNICEF, said in a statement.
"No one used data more persuasively to make the case for why investing in the most disadvantaged children is not only the right thing to do; it is the smart thing to do," Lake said. "We will miss him."
Rosling died on Tuesday, aged 68, after a year-long illness, in Uppsala, Sweden.
He was a statistician and development champion, whose gift for making data sing brought his innovative ideas to a worldwide audience.
A professor of international health at Sweden's Karolinska Institute, Rosling liked to call himself an "edutainer."
A talented presenter, whose signature animated data visualisations have featured in dozens of film clips, the statistician used humour and often unlikely objects such as children's toys, cardboard boxes and teacups to liven up data on wealth, inequality and population.