The topology and geometry of automorphism groups of free groups II

13 February 2012
15:45
Karen Vogtmann
Abstract
Free groups, free abelian groups and fundamental groups of closed orientable surfaces are the most basic and well-understood examples of infinite discrete groups. The automorphism groups of these groups, in contrast, are some of the most complex and intriguing groups in all of mathematics. In these lectures I will concentrate on groups of automorphisms of free groups, while drawing analogies with the general linear group over the integers and surface mapping class groups. I will explain modern techniques for studying automorphism groups of free groups, which include a mixture of topological, algebraic and geometric methods.