Remembering Sven Hamrell

Sven Hamrell, former Executive Director of the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, passed away on 2 July, aged 92.

Sven started work with the Foundation in 1968 and held the post of Executive Director for 28 years. Thus, he was fundamental in shaping the early development of, and setting the course for, the Foundation.

His leadership paved the way for almost 30 years of programming that, in retrospect, to a large extent reflects the development of international foreign aid. Sven was a devoted internationalist with a deep and personal engagement in development rooted in solidarity.

Professor Thomas G. Weiss interviewed Sven Hamrell in Uppsala in 2001 as part of the United Nations Intellectual History Project. The interview, ‘In those days, it was fun to be a Swede’ (PDF), was published in Development Dialogue no. 60 (2012) in connection with the Foundation’s 50th anniversary celebrations. The interview provides an inside story, told in his own words.

Sven will be remembered for his personal leadership, an extraordinary wide web of contacts, his integrity and his passion for development.

Our thoughts are with his family and we remain grateful for his contribution the work of the Foundation.