IBM Research Celebrates 40 Years in IsraelApr. 2, 2013
IBM celebrated its hundredth birthday last year. And for 40 of those years, the international technology leader has maintained a research lab in Haifa, Israel, its largest one outside the United States.
While today it seems obvious that major corporations with heavy investments in R&D would want to have a division in Israel, in 1972, when IBM Research opened its Israel office, that was hardly the case. In fact, it was more a matter of IBM not wanting to lose one of its top scientists, Israeli-born Prof. Josef Raviv, who wanted to move back home.
Raviv convinced IBM to let him “hire three to four scientists in the desert,” Oded Cohn, director of IBM Research in Israel, tells ISRAEL21c. That’s grown to a staff of 500 in Haifa today and another 500 employees around the country.
Some of IBM’s most cutting-edge innovations have been developed in the Holy Land. IBM Research in Israel was an early pioneer in the development of ultrasound equipment to detect liver cancer, for example, and was involved in R&D on IBM’s large RS/6000 workstations used in the 1990s.
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