Colloquium: Making AI faster, easier, and safer

Red Hat Collaboratory at Boston University Colloquium

Rania Khalaf
Director of AI Platforms and Runtimes at IBM Research

Making AI faster, easier, and safer


Artificial intelligence is being infused into applications at an ever increasing rate. The proliferation of machine learning models in production has surfaced the need to bridge between the worlds of machine learning and software engineering in order to scale these deployments in a fast, safe and repeatable way. Finally, it is important to consider the applications that these models are deployed within and the context that brings to improving business outcomes effectively through ML. In this talk, we will talk about key challenges of deploying AI in production and using it to improve business outcomes while highlighting some of the work we are doing at IBM Research AI to address this gap.


Rania Khalaf is the Director of AI Platforms and Runtimes at IBM Research AI where she leads teams pushing the envelope in AI platforms to make creating AI models and applications easy, fast, and safe for data scientists and developers. Her multi-disciplinary teams tackle key problems at the intersection of core AI, distributed systems, human computer interaction and cloud computing. Their recent projects include the Deep Learning capabilities in IBM Watson Studio, core features in IBM OpenScale, AI Fairness 360, and IBM’s Learn and Play AI games.

Prior to this role, Rania was Director of Cloud Platform, Programming Models and Runtimes where her teams’ work resulted in Apache OpenWhisk and IBM Cloud Functions, Swift@IBM, API Harmony and Amalgam8 (now Istio). Before that, she led efforts on Machine Learning in Business Process and Case Management and made foundational contributions to SOA and Web standards, earning awards including IBM’s Extraordinary Research Accomplishment.

Rania serves on the Advisory Board of the Hariri Institute for Computing at Boston University. She has received several Outstanding Technical Innovation awards for major impact to the field of computer science and is a finalist for the 2019 MassTLC CTO of the Year award. She has lived in 8 countries, spent a summer in India teaching kids to code, and holds a PhD with honors from University of Stuttgart and a Masters and Bachelors in EECS from MIT.


  • 11:30 AM: Refreshments & Networking
  • 12:00 – 1:00 PM: Talk and Discussion

Recording of Event

A recording of the talk will be available here following the event.

Dates & Times

Tuesday February 11, 2020
11:30-12:00 PM – Refreshments and Pizza
12:00 – 1:00 PM Talk and Discussion


Hariri Institute for Computing
111 Cummington Mall, Room 157



Contact the Collaboratory with any questions you may have about this event.