Past Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar

1 December 2021
16:00
Abstract

Group theoretic Dehn filling, motivated by Dehn filling in the theory of 3- manifolds, is a process of constructing quotients of a given group. This technique is usually applied to groups with certain negative curvature feature, for example word-hyperbolic groups, to construct exotic and useful examples of groups. In this talk, I will start by recalling the notion of word-hyperbolic groups, and then show that how group theoretic Dehn filling can be used to answer the Burnside Problem and questions about mapping class groups of surfaces.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
24 November 2021
16:00
Davide Spriano
Abstract

A big mapping class group is the mapping class group (MCG) of a surface of infinite type. Although several aspects of big MCGs remain mysterious, their geometric definition allows some simple, interesting arguments. In this talk, we will use big MCGs as an excuse to survey some (more or less) classical results in geometric group theory: we will present a quick introduction to infinite type surfaces, highlight differences between standard and large MCGs, and use Higman’s embedding theorem to deduce that there exists a big MCG that contains every finitely presented group as a subgroup.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
17 November 2021
16:00
Calum Ashcroft
Abstract

Given a group G acting on a CAT(0) polygonal complex, X, it is natural to ask whether the structure of X allows us to deduce properties of G. We discuss some recent work on local properties that X may possess which allow us to answer these questions - in many cases we can in fact deduce that the group is a linear group over Z.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
10 November 2021
16:00
Christoph Weis
Abstract

Orbifolds are a generalisation of manifolds which allow group actions to enter the picture. The most basic examples of orbifolds are quotients of manifolds by (non-free) finite group actions.
I will give an introduction to orbifolds, recalling a number of philosophically different but mathematically equivalent definitions. For starters, I will try to convince you that "a space locally modelled on a quotient of R^n by a finite group" is misleading. I will draw many pictures of orbifolds, make the connection to complexes of groups, and explain the definition of a map of orbifolds. In the process, I hope to demystify the definition of the orbifold fundamental group, the orbifold Euler characteristic and orbifold cohomology.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
3 November 2021
16:00
Luciana Basualdo Bonatto
Abstract

In this talk, I will discuss the important Grothendieck conjecture which originated Grothendieck-Teichmuller Theory, a bridge between Topology and Number Theory. On the geometric side, there is the study of automorphisms of mapping class groups that satisfy compatibility conditions with respect to subsurface inclusions. On the other side, there is the study of the absolute Galois group of the rationals, one of the most important objects in Number Theory today.
In my talk, I will introduce these objects and discuss the recent progress that has been made in understanding such automorphisms of mapping class groups. No background in Number Theory or Galois Theory is required.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
27 October 2021
16:00
Abstract

Finiteness properties of groups provide various generalisations of the properties "finitely generated" and "finitely presented." We will define different types of finiteness properties and discuss Bestvina-Brady groups as they provide examples of groups with interesting combinations of finiteness properties.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
20 October 2021
16:00
Sami Douba
Abstract

Button observed that finitely generated linear groups containing no nontrivial unipotent matrices behave much like groups admitting proper actions by semisimple isometries on complete CAT(0) spaces. It turns out that any finitely generated linear group possesses an action on such a space whose restrictions to unipotent-free subgroups are in some sense tame. We discuss this phenomenon and some of its implications for the representation theory of certain 3-manifold groups.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
13 October 2021
16:00
Monika Kudlinska
Abstract

Given an arbitrary group presentation, often very little can be deduced about the underlying group. It is thus something of a miracle that many properties of one-relator groups can be simply read-off from the defining relator. In this talk, I will discuss some of the classical results in the theory of one-relator groups, as well as the key trick used in many of their proofs. Time-permitting, I'll also discuss more recent work on this subject, including some open problems.

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
17 June 2021
10:00
Mireille Soergel
Abstract

We introduce the notion of systolic complexes and give conditions on presentations to construct such complexes using Cayley graphs.

We consider Garside groups to find examples of groups admitting such a presentation.
 

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  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar
10 June 2021
10:00
Thibault Decoppet
Abstract

The goal of this talk is to present some elementary examples of fusion 2-categories whilst doing as little higher category theory as possible. More precisely, it turns out that up to a canonical completion operation, certain higher fusion categories are entirely described by their maximal subspaces. I will briefly motivate this completion operation in the 1-categorical case, and go on to explain why working with spaces is good enough in this particular case. Then, we will review some fact about $E_n$-algebras, and why they come into the picture. Finally, we will have a look at some small examples arising from finite groups.

  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar

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