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Algorithmic Graph Minor Theory: Decomposition, Approximation, and Coloring
 In 46th Annual IEEE Symposium on Foundations of Computer Science
, 2005
"... At the core of the seminal Graph Minor Theory of Robertson and Seymour is a powerful structural theorem capturing the structure of graphs excluding a fixed minor. This result is used throughout graph theory and graph algorithms, but is existential. We develop a polynomialtime algorithm using topolog ..."
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Cited by 44 (12 self)
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At the core of the seminal Graph Minor Theory of Robertson and Seymour is a powerful structural theorem capturing the structure of graphs excluding a fixed minor. This result is used throughout graph theory and graph algorithms, but is existential. We develop a polynomialtime algorithm using topological graph theory to decompose a graph into the structure guaranteed by the theorem: a cliquesum of pieces almostembeddable into boundedgenus surfaces. This result has many applications. In particular, we show applications to developing many approximation algorithms, including a 2approximation to graph coloring, constantfactor approximations to treewidth and the largest grid minor, combinatorial polylogarithmicapproximation to halfintegral multicommodity flow, subexponential fixedparameter algorithms, and PTASs for many minimization and maximization problems, on graphs excluding a fixed minor. 1.
Bidimensionality: New Connections between FPT Algorithms and PTASs
"... We demonstrate a new connection between fixedparameter tractability and approximation algorithms for combinatorial optimization problems on planar graphs and their generalizations. Specifically, we extend the theory of socalled “bidimensional” problems to show that essentially all such problems ha ..."
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Cited by 37 (5 self)
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We demonstrate a new connection between fixedparameter tractability and approximation algorithms for combinatorial optimization problems on planar graphs and their generalizations. Specifically, we extend the theory of socalled “bidimensional” problems to show that essentially all such problems have both subexponential fixedparameter algorithms and PTASs. Bidimensional problems include e.g. feedback vertex set, vertex cover, minimum maximal matching, face cover, a series of vertexremoval problems, dominating set, edge dominating set, rdominating set, diameter, connected dominating set, connected edge dominating set, and connected rdominating set. We obtain PTASs for all of these problems in planar graphs and certain generalizations; of particular interest are our results for the two wellknown problems of connected dominating set and general feedback vertex set for planar graphs and their generalizations, for which PTASs were not known to exist. Our techniques generalize and in some sense unify the two main previous approaches for designing PTASs in planar graphs, namely, the LiptonTarjan separator approach [FOCS’77] and the Baker layerwise decomposition approach [FOCS’83]. In particular, we replace the notion of separators with a more powerful tool from the bidimensionality theory, enabling the first approach to apply to a much broader class of minimization problems than previously possible; and through the use of a structural backbone and thickening of layers we demonstrate how the second approach can be applied to problems with a “nonlocal” structure.
Linearity of Grid Minors in Treewidth with Applications through Bidimensionality
, 2005
"... We prove that any Hminorfree graph, for a fixed graph H, of treewidth w has an \Omega (w) *\Omega ( w) grid graph as a minor. Thus grid minors suffice to certify that Hminorfree graphs havelarge treewidth, up to constant factors. This strong relationship was previously known for the special cas ..."
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Cited by 20 (1 self)
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We prove that any Hminorfree graph, for a fixed graph H, of treewidth w has an \Omega (w) *\Omega ( w) grid graph as a minor. Thus grid minors suffice to certify that Hminorfree graphs havelarge treewidth, up to constant factors. This strong relationship was previously known for the special cases of planar graphs and boundedgenus graphs, and is known not to hold for generalgraphs. The approach of this paper can be viewed more generally as a framework for extending combinatorial results on planar graphs to hold on Hminorfree graphs for any fixed H. Ourresult has many combinatorial consequences on bidimensionality theory, parametertreewidth bounds, separator theorems, and bounded local treewidth; each of these combinatorial resultshas several algorithmic consequences including subexponential fixedparameter algorithms and approximation algorithms.