Carl Ellison. Establishing Identity Without Certification Authorities. In Proc. Sixth USENIX Security Symposium, pages 6776, Berkeley, 1996. Usenix.
Again, this is a fellow who is basically a systems researcher, not a cryptographer as such (he has no publications in crypto theory to my knowledge), and he was publishing good ideas along these lines back in '96.
Oh, and of course Ron Rivest was doing a very similar thing in '96: http://people.csail.mit.edu/rivest/sdsi10.html
So there's the first example I can come up with of a bona fide cryptographer giving us something more robust and decentralized than the PKI model.
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