Year Joined

  • 2008

Areas of Expertise

  • Technology 

Boards Joined

  • Founding member of UNDP Private Sector Advisory Board/IEEE Fellow 



Ya-Qin Zhang Former President, Baidu


Former President


Dr.Ya-Qin Zhang is the founder and Chairman of Blue Entropy LLC, a consulting firm in internet technology, AI, cloud computing, and new digital transformation. He will join Tsinghua University as the Chair Professor of AI science in July 2020, starting the Tsinghua institute for Advanced Industry Research (AIR) to develop fundamental technologies for the fourth industrial revolution, such as autonomous driving, AI-IoT, and industrial AI.

He served as the President of Baidu Inc. for 5 years (2014.09-2019.10), responsible for autonomous driving, AI and cloud computing, infrastructure technologies, and emerging businesses.

Prior to joining Baidu, Zhang was Microsoft’s Corporate Vice President and Chairman of Asia R&D Group, leading Microsoft’s overall research and development efforts in Asia-Pacific, Microsoft’s largest R&D establishment outside of US with over 3,000 scientists and engineers. Over his 16 year tenure at Microsoft, he has taken various key positions, including the Managing Director of Microsoft Research Asia (2000-2004), Chairman of Microsoft China (2007-2012), Corporate Vice President of Mobile and Embedded Products (2004-2006), and Asia R&D Chairman until September 2014.
Zhang was also the Director of the Multimedia Technology Laboratory at Sarnoff Corp. (now SRI) in Princeton, New Jersey between 1994 and 1998, and a senior technical staff member at GTE Laboratories Inc. (now part of Verizon) Corp. in Waltham, Massachusetts between 1990 and 1994.

Zhang was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences for his seminal contributions and leadership in digital video technology. He is also a Fellow of Australia National Academy of Engineering, and IEEE. He is an author of over 500 publications, 62 US patents, and 12 books. He serves on the Board of Directors of four public companies, and holds guest professorship in 8 universities. He is the Chairman of world’s largest open autonomous driving platform “Apollo” alliance with over 170 global partners. He has been a leading champion of innovation and globalization, and a frequent feature speaker in global forums including APEC, Davos World Economic Forum, United Nations, and Bo’Ao Asia Forum.

Zhang received his B.S. and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Science and Technology of China (USTC) in 1983 and 1985. He received his Doctor of Science in Electrical Engineering from George Washington University, Washington D.C. in 1989.


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