Rigidity of curve graphs and Ivanov's Metaconjecture

3 March 2021
Marco Barberis

Since its introduction in 1978 the curve complex has become one of the most important objects to study surfaces and their homeomorphisms. The curve complex is defined only using data about curves and their disjointness: a stunning feature of it is the fact that this information is enough to give it a rigid structure, that is every symplicial automorphism is induced topologically. Ivanov conjectured that this rigidity is a feature of most objects naturally associated to surfaces, if their structure is rich enough.

During the talk we will introduce the curve complex, then we will focus on its rigidity, giving a sketch of the topological constructions behind the proof. At last we will talk about generalisations of the curve complex, and highlight some rigidity results which are clues that Ivanov's Metaconjecture, even if it is more of a philosophical statement than a mathematical one, could be "true".

  • Junior Topology and Group Theory Seminar