Yuliy Sannikov is a theorist who has developed new methods for analyzing continuous time dynamic games using stochastic calculus methods. His work has not only broken new ground in methodology, it has had a substantial influence on applied theory. He has significantly altered the toolbox available for studying dynamic games, and as a result of his contributions, new areas of economic inquiry have become tractable for rigorous theoretical analysis. The areas of application include the design of securities, contract theory, macroeconomics with financial frictions, market microstructure, and collusion.
Sannikov’s work is impressive. It is elegant, powerful, and it paves the way for further analysis on lots of problems. The early successes highlighted how even simple and well-studied models could yield new insight. His most recent work has tackled more complex models in finance and macroeconomics. Previous models abstracted from crucial economic forces in the name of tractability, but Sannikov’s methods allow models to include the most important forces and thus deliver results that are much more relevant. He is one of the few theorists in many years to have introduced a truly novel tool that changed the way theory is done.