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A few years ago, I've heard about a harsh report from an American institution (I've forgotten which one, but it was something like the NSA) about IACR conferences. Which report could it be?

I think the global point of view of this report was about the fact the topics studied were too much theoretical.

I remembered that it made explicit mention of IBE (but I'm not sure).

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    $\begingroup$ Probably CryptoLog 1994 about EUROCRYPT 1992. $\endgroup$
    – Aleph
    Jul 1 at 9:16
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    $\begingroup$ The ICARS conference is a non classified academic research bucket where you can see how things relate to actual problems. The government funders are looking for solutions to actual problems, and generally, we see that most pure academic groups are focusing on something interesting or fun, and not mundane engineering tasks with a nuance. This is probably because one cannot publish a paper about mundane nuance. <shrug> $\endgroup$
    – b degnan
    Jul 1 at 17:23
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Here is a blog where Scott Aaronson wrote about this, including a link to the NSA document. That link is however now broken, but the blog contains all of the needed text. An alternative copy of the document is provided here or on the internet archive.

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    $\begingroup$ So basically NSA attends Eurocrypt conferences and then decides.... It's ok, no biggie ... Come on guys... you can do better than this.... $\endgroup$ Jul 1 at 15:11
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    $\begingroup$ @RomanGherta I don't think that's the takeaway at all. $\endgroup$
    – forest
    Jul 2 at 2:34

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