The normalized cyclomatic quotient associated with presentations of finitely generated groups

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Given a presentation of an n-generated group, we define the normalized cyclomatic quotient (NCQ) of it, which gives a number between 1−n and 1. It is computed through an investigation of the asymptotic behavior of a kind of an `average rank', or more precisely the quotient of the rank of the fundamental group of a finite subgraph of the corresponding Cayley graph by the size of the subgraph. In many ways (but not always) the NCQ behaves similarly to the behavior of the spectral radius of a symmetric random walk on the graph. In particular, it characterizes amenable groups. For some types of groups, such as finite, amenable or free groups, its value equals that of the Euler characteristic of the group. We give bounds for the value of the NCQ for factor groups and subgroups, and formulas for its value on direct and free products. Some other asymptotic invariants are also discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)285-313
JournalIsrael Journal of Mathematics
Publication statusPublished - 1997

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