Train Tracks, Diffeomorphisms of Surfaces and Automorphisms of Free Groups
July 7 - 18, 2014Instructor: Mladen Bestvina
In the 1970's Thurston introduced the notion of train tracks as a combinatorial tool for studying simple closed curves on surfaces. This notion played an important role in his study of selfdiffeomorphisms of surfaces. In the 80's, Bestvina and Handel introduced a parallel notion of train tracks for free group automorphisms giving a uniform way to study both the mapping class group and the group of outer automorphisms of free groups. This has proven to be a powerful tool and this course will provide an introduction to the topic for advanced undergraduates given by one of its originators.
The course will cover the following topics:
Financial support is available to US citizens and permanent residents and all eligible students who are accepted will have all of their costs associated with attendance covered.
Deadline: March 21, 2014