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The metamathematics of ergodic theory
 THE ANNALS OF PURE AND APPLIED LOGIC
, 2009
"... The metamathematical tradition, tracing back to Hilbert, employs syntactic modeling to study the methods of contemporary mathematics. A central goal has been, in particular, to explore the extent to which infinitary methods can be understood in computational or otherwise explicit terms. Ergodic theo ..."
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The metamathematical tradition, tracing back to Hilbert, employs syntactic modeling to study the methods of contemporary mathematics. A central goal has been, in particular, to explore the extent to which infinitary methods can be understood in computational or otherwise explicit terms. Ergodic theory provides rich opportunities for such analysis. Although the field has its origins in seventeenth century dynamics and nineteenth century statistical mechanics, it employs infinitary, nonconstructive, and structural methods that are characteristically modern. At the same time, computational concerns and recent applications to combinatorics and number theory force us to reconsider the constructive character of the theory and its methods. This paper surveys some recent contributions to the metamathematical study of ergodic theory, focusing on the mean and pointwise ergodic theorems and the Furstenberg structure theorem for measure preserving systems. In particular, I characterize the extent to which these theorems are nonconstructive, and explain how prooftheoretic methods can be used to locate their “constructive content.”
Functional interpretation and inductive definitions
 Journal of Symbolic Logic
"... Abstract. Extending Gödel’s Dialectica interpretation, we provide a functional interpretation of classical theories of positive arithmetic inductive definitions, reducing them to theories of finitetype functionals defined using transfinite recursion on wellfounded trees. 1. ..."
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Abstract. Extending Gödel’s Dialectica interpretation, we provide a functional interpretation of classical theories of positive arithmetic inductive definitions, reducing them to theories of finitetype functionals defined using transfinite recursion on wellfounded trees. 1.
Induction and inductive definitions in fragments of second order arithmetic
 The Journal of Symbolic Logic
"... A fragment with the same provably recursive functions as n iterated inductive definitions is obtained by restricting second order arithmetic in the following way. The underlying language allows only up to n + 1 nested second order quantifications and those are in such a way, that no second order var ..."
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A fragment with the same provably recursive functions as n iterated inductive definitions is obtained by restricting second order arithmetic in the following way. The underlying language allows only up to n + 1 nested second order quantifications and those are in such a way, that no second order variable occurs free in the scope of another second order quantifier. The amount of induction on arithmetical formulae only affects the arithmetical consequences of these theories, whereas adding induction for arbitrary formulae increases the strength by one inductive definition. 1 Introduction and Related Work The study of subsystems of second order arithmetic (“Analysis”) has a long tradition in proof theory. Here we investigate a fragment that is defined by a restriction of the language. By allowing quantification of a second order variable only for formulae with at most this second order variable free, we obtain a proof