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Random structures: Phase transitions, scaling limits, and universality

Dr. Sanchayan Sen, McGill University, Canada
Dr. Sanchayan Sen, McGill University, Canada
When Jun 07, 2017
from 11:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Where LH 006
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{Abstract:} The aim of this talk is to give an overview of some recent results in two interconnected areas:

a) Random discrete structures: One major conjecture in probabilistic combinatorics, formulated by statistical physicists using non-rigorous arguments and enormous simulations in the early 2000s, is as follows: for a wide array of random graph models on \([n]\)vertices and degree

exponent \([\tau>3]\), typical distance both within maximal components in the critical regime as well as in the strong disorder regime scale like \([n^{\frac{\tau\wedge 4 -3}{\tau\wedge 4 -1}}]\). In other words, the degree

exponent determines the universality class the random graph belongs to. The mathematical machinery available at the time was insufficient for providing a rigorous justification of this conjectur

More generally, recent research has provided strong evidence to believe

that several objects, including 

(i) components under critical percolation, 

(ii) the vacant set left by a random walk, and 

(iii) the minimal spanning tree,

constructed on a wide class of random discrete structures converge, when viewed as metric measure spaces, to some random fractals in the Gromov-Hausdorff

sense, and these limiting objects are universal under some general assumptions. We will discuss recent developments in a larger program aimed

at a complete resolution of these conjectures.

b) Stochastic geometry: In contrast, less precise results are known in the case of spatial systems. We discuss a recent result concerning the length 

of spatial minimal spanning trees that answers a question raised by Kesten and Lee in the 90's, the proof of which relies on a variation of Stein's 

method and a quantification of a classical argument in percolation theory.

Based on joint work with Louigi Addario-Berry, Shankar Bhamidi, Nicolas Broutin, Sourav Chatterjee, Remco van der Hofstad, and Xuan Wang.

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