### GEORGE MASON
UNIVERSITY

DEPARTMENT OF MATHEMATICAL
SCIENCES

COLLOQUIUM

FEBRUARY 20, 2015

**Speaker: **
Yvonne Kemper, National Institute of Standards and Technology

**Title: ***
From Broken Circuits to Monte Carlo: Approximating
the Coefficients of the Chromatic Polynomial
*

**Abstract:**
Chromatic polynomials are fascinating objects that tie together graph theory and statistical physics, and their study brings together matroids, geometry, monomial rings, and more. As a result of computational difficulties, however, their study is limited to graphs that are small, highly structured, or very sparse. We have devised and implemented algorithms that approximate the coefficients of the chromatic polynomial P(G,x). In this (friendly!) talk, we will discuss previous approximation algorithms, the combinatorial and geometric bases for our algorithms, and possibilities for improvement, including proving bounds on variance.

**Time:** Friday, February 20, 2015, 3:30-4:20 p.m.

**Place:** Exploratory Hall, room 4106

**Refreshments** will be served at 3:00 p.m.

Department of Mathematical Sciences

George Mason University

4400 University Drive, MS 3F2

Fairfax, VA 22030-4444

http://math.gmu.edu/

Tel. 703-993-1460, Fax. 703-993-1491