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Colloquium - Dr. Graham Denham, Western University, "Intersection-theoretic characteristic polynomial formulas"

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  • Fri, 11/14/2014 - 3:00pm


The characteristic polynomial of a matroid is an invariant that generalizes the chromatic polynomial of a graph.  In certain cases, the theory of hyperplane arrangements provides it with numerous topological and algebraic interpretations.

I will give an overview of a relatively new such interpretation.  Here, the characteristic polynomial is related to a fundamental geometric construction involving critical points of products of polynomial functions.  We see that some intersection theory (in the form of Chern-Schwartz-MacPherson classes) turns out to  be a perfect tool for combinatorics.


Dina Labelle
(519)253-3000 ext.3016