During the past five years we have seen a wealth of new cryptographic constructions based on an algebraic tool called `pairings.’ These constructions give new key management mechanisms that are often simpler than what is possible with traditional cryptography. They also lead to public-key cryptographic primitives better suited for bandwidth constrained environments. This talk will survey some of these new constructions and pose a few open problems in this area. More specifically, we will present a recent broadcast encryption system and a short digital signature. The talk will be self contained.