Dinesh Nirmal is Vice President of Development for IBM Data and AI, with global responsibility for building the analytics, data and AI technology in use by enterprises from governments and international finance to startups. Dinesh leads more than a dozen IBM Development Labs around the world; major releases during his 2-year tenure include IBM Cloud Private for Data— an open, cloud-native information architecture for AI; IBM Integrated Analytics System; Machine Learning for z/OS; and IBM Watson Studio. Products in his portfolio have won major design awards including two Red Dot Awards and the iF Design Award.
As his core mission, Dinesh puts each client in a position to disrupt and innovate in a cloud and AI-powered world. To this end, he speaks and writes internationally about data estate modernization and best practices for operationalizing ML in enterprise, publishing a guest column in VentureBeat and garnering recognition from Forbes. Within his product portfolio, Dinesh recently assumed responsibility for IBM Watson Studio and AI OpenScale with NeuNetS, which makes it possible for non-expert users to create complex, deep-neural networks from scratch.
Early in his tenure, Dinesh pushed to infuse machine learning into every aspect of the IBM Data and AI portfolio, an initiative that now boasts SQL query optimization within Db2, active learning within StoredIQ, embedded ML for data integration and governance within Information Server, and a dozen additional advances.
Recognizing a market need for machine learning mastery, he launched 6 international Machine Learning Hubs to work with clients face-to-face. He also launched Inside Machine Learning to share new thinking and best practices on topics from emotional AI to augmented reality.
Dinesh continues his longstanding commitment to open source, leveraging IBM’s position, with its acquisition of Red Hat, as the largest provider of open source software and containers for the enterprise in hybrid cloud, data and analytics market, to ensuring products in his portfolio are integrated with critical open source software. In particular, Dinesh insists on open source as the foundation of the data architecture: Apache Spark™, Apache Atlas™, Kubernetes, and Docker. Dinesh serves on the Board of the R Consortium and led the IBM Spark Technology Center in 2015 when IBM made a historic investment in Apache Spark.
Dinesh led an internal transformation resulting in a product team that innovates and releases at speed. He streamlined product areas, achieved organization-wide adoption of tools like Salesforce, GitHub and Slack, pivoted to continuous build and integration, and standardized multi-cloud deployment and a 100% agile development process. He implemented ML in IT operations, developed an internal dashboard to use ML to track critical customer issues and product NPS in real time, kicked off an “ML Everywhere” initiative to make sure every developer in his organization has machine learning education and training, and launched a Technical Leadership Team to develop long term vision and strategy.
Dinesh is also the Site Executive for IBM Silicon Valley Lab. Since assuming the role, he’s opened a new, multi-million-dollar cafeteria; held Fireside Chats with visiting dignitaries like the Consul General of India for San Francisco and Sam Liccardo, Mayor of San Jose; led IBM’s sponsorship of Save the San Francisco Bay as a Bay Hero; and broken ground on the first cricket pitch at a major Silicon Valley tech site.
Dinesh’s leadership principle has always been “people first” — knowing that when you put people first, great products and customers follow. To that end, he kicked off his tenure with an international “listening tour,” hosting round tables with employees at each of his labs. He also routinely meets one-on-one with new team members and publishes conversations with them in his widely-read series, You in IBM Analytics. And recognizing the need to reward and acknowledge the hard work of his team, he founded a series of wildly popular weekly awards that encourage innovation, collaboration, effort, and excellence.
Prior to his role as Vice President of Data and AI Development, Dinesh was Vice President of Smarter Process, IBM Software Group, responsible for workflow and decision software. In that capacity, he led the partnership with Apple to develop IBM’s mobile initiative for workflow development and led the shift to an agile development process for the IBM Software Group.
Dinesh holds a master’s degree in Computer Science and an MBA, both from SUNY Institute of Technology in Utica, NY. He lives in San Jose with his wife, formerly an engineer at Apple, and their two young sons.
Board & Advisor Roles:
R Consortium, Member of the Board of Directors