We show that the generation problem in Thompson group F is decidable, i.e., there is an algorithm which decides if a finite set of elements of F generates the whole F. The algorithm makes use of the Stallings 2-core of subgroups of F, which can be defined in an analogue way to the Stallings core of subgroups of a free group. An application of the algorithm shows that F is a cyclic extension of a group K which has a maximal elementary amenable subgroup B. The group B is a copy of a subgroup of F constructed by Brin.
Abstract: In the early 2000s Sela proved that all non-abelian free groups share a common first-order theory. Together with R. Sklinos, we use tools developed in his work to show that no infinite field is definable in this theory. In this talk we will survey the line of proof for a formal solution theorem for a simple sort of definable sets, that have a structure of a hyperbolic tower, and use it to characterize definable sets that do not carry a definable structure of an abelian group.
Abstract: A permutation representation of a group G is called highly transitive if it is transitive on k-tuples of points for every k. Until just a few years ago groups admitting such permutation representations were thought of as rare. I will focus on three rather recent papers: G-Garion, Hall-Osin, Gelander-G-Meiri (in preparation) showing that such groups are in fact very common.
(joint work with Françoise Dal'Bo and Andrea Sambusetti)
Given a finitely generated group G acting properly on a metric space X,
the exponential growth rate of G with respect to X measures "how big"
the orbits of G are. If H is a subgroup of G, its exponential growth
rate is bounded above by the one of G. In this work we are interested in
the following question: what can we say if H and G have the same
exponential growth rate? This problem has both a combinatorial and a
geometric origin. For the combinatorial part, Grigorchuck and Cohen