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Title: Extremal and structural problems of graphs
Author: Ferra Gomes de Almeida Girão, António José
ISNI:       0000 0004 7653 0593
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2019
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In this dissertation, we are interested in studying several parameters of graphs and understanding their extreme values. We begin in Chapter~$2$ with a question on edge colouring. When can a partial proper edge colouring of a graph of maximum degree $\Delta$ be extended to a proper colouring of the entire graph using an `optimal' set of colours? Albertson and Moore conjectured this is always possible provided no two precoloured edges are within distance $2$. The main result of Chapter~$2$ comes close to proving this conjecture. Moreover, in Chapter~$3$, we completely answer the previous question for the class of planar graphs. Next, in Chapter~$4$, we investigate some Ramsey theoretical problems. We determine exactly what minimum degree a graph $G$ must have to guarantee that, for any two-colouring of $E(G)$, we can partition $V(G)$ into two parts where each part induces a connected monochromatic subgraph. This completely resolves a conjecture of Bal and Debiasio. We also prove a `covering' version of this result. Finally, we study another variant of these problems which deals with coverings of a graph by monochromatic components of distinct colours. The following saturation problem proposed by Barrus, Ferrara, Vandenbussche, and Wenger is considered in Chapter~$5$. Given a graph $H$ and a set of colours $\{1,2,\ldots,t\}$ (for some integer $t\geq |E(H)|$), we define $sat_{t}(n, R(H))$ to be the minimum number of $t$-coloured edges in a graph on $n$ vertices which does not contain a rainbow copy of $H$ but the addition of any non-edge in any colour from $\{1,2,\ldots,t\}$ creates such a copy. We prove several results concerning these extremal numbers. In particular, we determine the correct order of $sat_{t}(n, R(H))$, as a function of $n$, for every connected graph $H$ of minimum degree greater than $1$ and for every integer $t\geq e(H)$. In Chapter~$6$, we consider the following question: under what conditions does a Hamiltonian graph on $n$ vertices possess a second cycle of length at least $n-o(n)$? We prove that the `weak' assumption of a minimum degree greater or equal to $3$ guarantees the existence of such a long cycle. We solve two problems related to majority colouring in Chapter~$7$. This topic was recently studied by Kreutzer, Oum, Seymour, van der Zypen and Wood. They raised the problem of determining, for a natural number $k$, the smallest positive integer $m = m(k)$ such that every digraph can be coloured with $m$ colours, where each vertex has the same colour as at most a proportion of $\frac{1}{k}$ of its out-neighbours. Our main theorem states that $m(k) \in \{2k-1, 2k\}$. We study the following problem, raised by Caro and Yuster, in Chapter~$8$. Does every graph $G$ contain a `large' induced subgraph $H$ which has $k$ vertices of degree exactly $\Delta(H)$? We answer in the affirmative an approximate version of this question. Indeed, we prove that, for every $k$, there exists $g(k)$ such that any $n$ vertex graph $G$ with maximum degree $\Delta$ contains an induced subgraph $H$ with at least $n-g(k)\sqrt{\Delta}$ vertices such that $V(H)$ contains at least $k$ vertices of the same degree $d \ge \Delta(H)-g(k)$. This result is sharp up to the order of $g(k)$. %Subsequently, we investigate a concept called $\textit{path-pairability}$. A graph is said to be path-pairable if for any pairing of its vertices there exist a collection of edge-disjoint paths routing the the vertices of each pair. A question we are concerned here asks whether every planar path pairable graph on $n$ vertices must possess a vertex of degree linear in $n$. Indeed, we answer this question in the affirmative. We also sketch a proof resolving an analogous question for graphs embeddable on surfaces of bounded genus. Finally, in Chapter~$9$, we move on to examine $k$-linked tournaments. A tournament $T$ is said to be $k$-linked if for any two disjoint sets of vertices $\{x_1,\ldots ,x_k\}$ and $\{y_1,\dots,y_k\}$ there are directed vertex disjoint paths $P_1,\dots, P_k$ such that $P_i$ joins $x_i$ to $y_i$ for $i = 1,\ldots, k$. We prove that any $4k$ strongly-connected tournament with sufficiently large minimum out-degree is $k$-linked. This result comes close to proving a conjecture of Pokrovskiy.
Supervisor: Bollobás, Béla Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Combinatorics ; Extremal Graph Theory ; Structural Graph Theory ; Ramsey theory ; Extremal Combinatorics