USA - 2012READ FULL CITATION AND ESSAY
Along with Shafi Goldwasser, for transformative work that laid the complexity-theoretic foundations for the science of cryptography, and in the process pioneered new methods for efficient verification of mathematical proofs in complexity theory.
Shafi Goldwasser and Silvio Micali laid the foundations of modern theoretical cryptography, taking it from a field of heuristics and hopes to a mathematical science with careful definitions and security models, precise specifications of adversarial capabilities, and rigorous reductions from formally defined computational problems. Their results, jointly and with others, established the now-standard definitions of security for the fundamental primitives of encryption and digital signatures, and provided exemplary implementations meeting the stated security objectives. Even more importantly, their work helped to establish the tone and character of modern cryptographic research. Jointly and in collaboration with others, they provided stunning innovations in the form of random functions, interactive proofs, and zero-knowledge protocols, with implications beyond cryptography to theoretical computer science in general.