Prof. Alex Suciu

Northeastern University
Professor of Mathematics

Papers bookmarked by Alex Suciu

Definitions in ScienceWISE papers

  • We explore the codimension one strata in the degree-one cohomology jumping loci of a finitely generated group, through the prism of the multivariable Alexander polynomial. As an application, we give new criteria that must be satisfied by fundamental groups of smooth, quasi-projective complex varieties. These criteria establish precisely which fundamental groups of boundary manifolds of complex line arrangements are quasi-projective. We also give sharp upper bounds for the twisted Betti ranks of a group, in terms of multiplicities constructed from the Alexander polynomial. For Seifert links in homology 3-spheres, these bounds become equalities, and our formula shows explicitly how the Alexander polynomial determines all the characteristic varieties.
  • We study the spectral sequence associated to the filtration by powers of the augmentation ideal on the (twisted) equivariant chain complex of the universal cover of a connected CW-complex X. In the process, we identify the d^1 differential in terms of the coalgebra structure of H_*(X,\k), and the \k\pi_1(X)-module structure on the twisting coefficients. In particular, this recovers in dual form a result of Reznikov, on the mod p cohomology of cyclic p-covers of aspherical complexes. This approach provides information on the homology of all Galois covers of X. It also yields computable upper bounds on the ranks of the cohomology groups of X, with coefficients in a prime-power order, rank one local system. When X admits a minimal cell decomposition, we relate the linearization of the equivariant cochain complex of the universal abelian cover to the Aomoto complex, arising from the cup-product structure of H^*(X,\k), thereby generalizing a result of Cohen and Orlik.
  • The question in the title, first raised by Goldman and Donaldson, was partially answered by Reznikov. We give a complete answer, as follows: if G can be realized as both the fundamental group of a closed 3-manifold and of a compact K\"ahler manifold, then G must be finite, and thus belongs to the well-known list of finite subgroups of O(4).
  • In this note, we address the following question: Which 1-formal groups occur as fundamental groups of both quasi-K\"ahler manifolds and closed, connected, orientable 3-manifolds. We classify all such groups, at the level of Malcev completions, and compute their coranks. Dropping the assumption on realizability by 3-manifolds, we show that the corank equals the isotropy index of the cup-product map in degree one. Finally, we examine the formality properties of smooth affine surfaces and quasi-homogeneous isolated surface singularities. In the latter case, we describe explicitly the positive-dimensional components of the first characteristic variety for the associated singularity link.
  • Given a fibration over the circle, we relate the eigenspace decomposition of the algebraic monodromy, the homological finiteness properties of the fiber, and the formality properties of the total space. In the process, we prove a more general result about iterated group extensions. As an application, we obtain new criteria for formality of spaces, and 1-formality of groups, illustrated by bundle constructions and various examples from low-dimensional topology and singularity theory.
  • We elucidate the key role played by formality in the theory of characteristic and resonance varieties. We define relative characteristic and resonance varieties, V_k and R_k, related to twisted group cohomology with coefficients of arbitrary rank. We show that the germs at the origin of V_k and R_k are analytically isomorphic, if the group is 1-formal; in particular, the tangent cone to V_k at 1 equals R_k. These new obstructions to 1-formality lead to a striking rationality property of the usual resonance varieties. A detailed analysis of the irreducible components of the tangent cone at 1 to the first characteristic variety yields powerful obstructions to realizing a finitely presented group as the fundamental group of a smooth, complex quasi-projective algebraic variety. This sheds new light on a classical problem of J.-P. Serre. Applications to arrangements, configuration spaces, coproducts of groups, and Artin groups are given.
  • We examine the Johnson filtration of the (outer) automorphism group of a finitely generated group. In the case of a free group, we find a surprising result: the first Betti number of the second subgroup in the Johnson filtration is finite. Moreover, the corresponding Alexander invariant is a non-trivial module over the Laurent polynomial ring. In the process, we show that the first resonance variety of the outer Torelli group of a free group is trivial. We also establish a general relationship between the Alexander invariant and its infinitesimal counterpart.
  • We exploit the classical correspondence between finitely generated abelian groups and abelian complex algebraic reductive groups to study the intersection theory of translated subgroups in an abelian complex algebraic reductive group, with special emphasis on intersections of (torsion) translated subtori in an algebraic torus.
  • The regular \Z^r-covers of a finite cell complex X are parameterized by the Grassmannian of r-planes in H^1(X,\Q). Moving about this variety, and recording when the Betti numbers b_1,..., b_i of the corresponding covers are finite carves out certain subsets \Omega^i_r(X) of the Grassmannian. We present here a method, essentially going back to Dwyer and Fried, for computing these sets in terms of the jump loci for homology with coefficients in rank 1 local systems on X. Using the exponential tangent cones to these jump loci, we show that each \Omega-invariant is contained in the complement of a union of Schubert varieties associated to an arrangement of linear subspaces in H^1(X,\Q). The theory can be made very explicit in the case when the characteristic varieties of X are unions of translated tori. But even in this setting, the \Omega-invariants are not necessarily open, not even when X is a smooth complex projective variety. As an application, we discuss the geometric finiteness properties of some classes of groups.
  • We describe some of the connections between the Bieri-Neumann-Strebel-Renz invariants, the Dwyer-Fried invariants, and the cohomology support loci of a space X. Under suitable hypotheses, the geometric and homological finiteness properties of regular, free abelian covers of X can be expressed in terms of the resonance varieties, extracted from the cohomology ring of X. In general, though, translated components in the characteristic varieties affect the answer. We illustrate this theory in the setting of toric complexes, as well as smooth, complex projective and quasi-projective varieties, with special emphasis on configuration spaces of Riemann surfaces and complements of hyperplane arrangements.
  • We present a method for deciding when a regular abelian cover of a finite CW-complex has finite Betti numbers. To start with, we describe a natural parameter space for all regular covers of a finite CW-complex X, with group of deck transformations a fixed abelian group A, which in the case of free abelian covers of rank r coincides with the Grassmanian of r-planes in H^1(X,\Q). Inside this parameter space, there is a subset \Omega_A^i(X) consisting of all the covers with finite Betti numbers up to degree i. Building on work of Dwyer and Fried, we show how to compute these sets in terms of the jump loci for homology with coefficients in rank 1 local systems on X. For certain spaces, such as smooth, quasi-projective varieties, the generalized Dwyer-Fried invariants that we introduce here can be computed in terms of intersections of algebraic subtori in the character group. For many spaces of interest, the homological finiteness of abelian covers can be tested through the corresponding free abelian covers. Yet in general, abelian covers exhibit different homological finiteness properties than their free abelian counterparts.
  • We explore a relationship between the classical representation theory of a complex, semisimple Lie algebra \g and the resonance varieties R(V,K)\subset V^* attached to irreducible \g-modules V and submodules K\subset V\wedge V. In the process, we give a precise roots-and-weights criterion insuring the vanishing of these varieties, or, equivalently, the finiteness of certain modules W(V,K) over the symmetric algebra on V. In the case when \g=sl_2(C), our approach sheds new light on the modules studied by Weyman and Eisenbud in the context of Green's conjecture on free resolutions of canonical curves. In the case when \g=sl_n(C) or sp_{2g}(C), our approach yields a unified proof of two vanishing results for the resonance varieties of the (outer) Torelli groups of surface groups, results which arose in recent work by Dimca, Hain, and the authors on homological finiteness in the Johnson filtration of mapping class groups and automorphism groups of free groups.
  • We prove two results relating 3-manifold groups to fundamental groups occurring in complex geometry. Let N be a compact, connected, orientable 3-manifold. If N has non-empty, toroidal boundary, and \pi_1(N) is a Kaehler group, then N is the product of a torus with an interval. On the other hand, if N has either empty or toroidal boundary, and \pi_1(N) is a quasi-projective group, then all the prime components of N are graph manifolds.
  • This is an extended abstract for a talk given at the mini-workshop "Cohomology rings and fundamental groups of hyperplane arrangements, wonderful compactifications, and real toric varieties", held in Oberwolfach, September 30-October 6, 2012. We describe a formula (obtained in joint work with Alvise Trevisan) for computing the Betti numbers of real toric manifolds, based on a study of cohomology with coefficients in rank one local systems for various polyhedral products. Applying this formula, we recover Henderson's computation of the Betti numbers of real Hessenberg varieties. We conclude with a discussion of the formality question in this context.
  • We study the homology jump loci of a chain complex over an affine \k-algebra. When the chain complex is the first page of the equivariant spectral sequence associated to a regular abelian cover of a finite-type CW-complex, we relate those jump loci to the resonance varieties associated to the cohomology ring of the space. As an application, we show that vanishing resonance implies a certain finiteness property for the completed Alexander invariants of the space. We also show that vanishing resonance is a Zariski open condition, on a natural parameter space for connected, finite-dimensional commutative graded algebras.
  • Given a finitely-generated group $\pi$ and a linear algebraic group $G$, the representation variety Hom$(\pi,G)$ has a natural filtration by the characteristic varieties associated to a rational representation of $G$. Its algebraic counterpart, the space of $\mathfrak{g}$-valued flat connections on a commutative, differential graded algebra $(A,d)$ admits a filtration by the resonance varieties associated to a representation of $\mathfrak{g}$. We establish here a number of results concerning the structure and qualitative properties of these embedded resonance varieties, with particular attention to the case when the rank 1 resonance variety decomposes as a finite union of linear subspaces. The general theory is illustrated in detail in the case when $\pi$ is either an Artin group, or the fundamental group of a smooth, quasi-projective variety.
  • We investigate the resonance varieties attached to a commutative differential graded algebra and to a representation of a Lie algebra, with emphasis on how these varieties behave under finite products and coproducts.
  • Bestvina-Brady groups arise as kernels of length homomorphisms from right-angled Artin groups G_\G to the integers. Under some connectivity assumptions on the flag complex \Delta_\G, we compute several algebraic invariants of such a group N_\G, directly from the underlying graph \G. As an application, we give examples of Bestvina-Brady groups which are not isomorphic to any Artin group or arrangement group.