Koh, Zhuan Khye
(2023)
*On linear, fractional, and submodular optimization.*
PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

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## Abstract

In this thesis, we study four fundamental problems in the theory of optimization. 1. In fractional optimization, we are interested in minimizing a ratio of two functions over some domain. A well-known technique for solving this problem is the Newton– Dinkelbach method. We propose an accelerated version of this classical method and give a new analysis using the Bregman divergence. We show how it leads to improved or simplified results in three application areas. 2. The diameter of a polyhedron is the maximum length of a shortest path between any two vertices. The circuit diameter is a relaxation of this notion, whereby shortest paths are not restricted to edges of the polyhedron. For a polyhedron in standard equality form with constraint matrix A, we prove an upper bound on the circuit diameter that is quadratic in the rank of A and logarithmic in the circuit imbalance measure of A. We also give circuit augmentation algorithms for linear programming with similar iteration complexity. 3. The correlation gap of a set function is the ratio between its multilinear and concave extensions. We present improved lower bounds on the correlation gap of a matroid rank function, parametrized by the rank and girth of the matroid. We also prove that for a weighted matroid rank function, the worst correlation gap is achieved with uniform weights. Such improved lower bounds have direct applications in submodular maximization and mechanism design. 4. The last part of this thesis concerns parity games, a problem intimately related to linear programming. A parity game is an infinite-duration game between two players on a graph. The problem of deciding the winner lies in NP and co-NP, with no known polynomial algorithm to date. Many of the fastest (quasi-polynomial) algorithms have been unified via the concept of a universal tree. We propose a strategy iteration framework which can be applied on any universal tree.

Item Type: | Thesis (PhD) |
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Additional Information: | © 2023 Zhuan Khye Koh |

Library of Congress subject classification: | Q Science > QA Mathematics |

Sets: | Departments > Mathematics |

Supervisor: | Végh, László A. |

URI: | http://etheses.lse.ac.uk/id/eprint/4463 |

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