http://www.dagstuhl.de/12421

October 14th – October 19th 2012, Dagstuhl Seminar 12421

Algebraic and Combinatorial Methods in Computational Complexity

Organizers

Manindra Agrawal (IIT – Kanpur, IN)
Thomas Thierauf (Hochschule Aalen, DE)
Christopher Umans (CalTech, US)


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Documents

Dagstuhl Report, Volume 2, Issue 10 Dagstuhl Report
List of Participants
Shared Documents
Dagstuhl's Impact: Documents available

Summary

At its core, much of Computational Complexity is concerned with combinatorial objects and structures. But it has often proven true that the best way to prove things about these combinatorial objects is by establishing a connection (perhaps approximate) to a more well-behaved algebraic setting.

Indeed, many of the deepest and most powerful results in Computational Complexity rely on algebraic proof techniques. The PCP characterization of NP and the Agrawal-Kayal-Saxena polynomial-time primality test are two prominent examples.

Recently, there have been some works going in the opposite direction, giving alternative combinatorial proofs for results that were originally proved algebraically. These alternative proofs can yield important improvements because they are closer to the underlying problems and avoid the losses in passing to the algebraic setting. A prominent example is Dinur's proof of the PCP Theorem via gap amplification which yielded short PCPs with only a poly-logarithmic length blowup (which had been the focus of significant research effort up to that point). We see here (and in a number of recent works) an exciting interplay between algebraic and combinatorial techniques.

The seminar brought together more than 50 researchers covering a wide spectrum of complexity theory. The focus on algebraic and combinatorial methods showed the great importance of such techniques for theoretical computer science. We had 30 talks, most of them lasting about 40 minutes, leaving ample room for discussions.

As is evident from the list above, the talks ranged over a broad assortment of subjects with the underlying theme of using algebraic and combinatorial techniques. It was a very fruitful meeting and has hopefully initiated new directions in research. Several participants specifically mentioned that they appreciated the particular focus on a common class of techniques (rather than end results) as a unifying theme of the workshop. We look forward to our next meeting!

Dagstuhl Seminar Series

Classification

  • Data Structures
  • Algorithm
  • Complexity
  • Security
  • Cryptology

Keywords

  • Computational complexity
  • Algebra
  • Combinatoric
  • (de-)randomization

Book exhibition

Books from the participants of the current Seminar 

Book exhibition in the library, 1st floor, during the seminar week.

Documentation

In the series Dagstuhl Reports each Dagstuhl Seminar and Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop is documented. The seminar organizers, in cooperation with the collector, prepare a report that includes contributions from the participants' talks together with a summary of the seminar.

 

Download overview leaflet (PDF).

Publications

Furthermore, a comprehensive peer-reviewed collection of research papers can be published in the series Dagstuhl Follow-Ups.

Dagstuhl's Impact

Please inform us when a publication was published as a result from your seminar. These publications are listed in the category Dagstuhl's Impact and are presented on a special shelf on the ground floor of the library.