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Handbook of Algebra defines algebra as consisting of many different ideas, concepts and results. Even the nonspecialist is likely to encounter most of these, either somewhere in the literature, disguised as a definition or a theorem or to hear about them and feel the need for more information. Each chapter of the book combines some of the features of both a graduate-level textbook and a research-level survey.

This book is divided into eight sections. Section 1A focuses on linear algebra and discusses such concepts as matrix functions and equations and random matrices. Section 1B cover linear dependence and discusses matroids. Section 1D focuses on fields, Galois Theory, and algebraic number theory. Section 1F tackles generalizations of fields and related objects. Section 2A focuses on category theory, including the topos theory and categorical structures. Section 2B discusses homological algebra, cohomology, and cohomological methods in algebra. Section 3A focuses on commutative rings and algebras. Finally, Section 3B focuses on associative rings and algebras.

This book will be of interest to mathematicians, logicians, and computer scientists.

Publisher: Elsevier ScienceReleased: Dec 18, 1995ISBN: 9780080532950Format: book

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Page 1 of 1

Tsukuba

Section 1A. Linear Algebra

**G.P. Egorychev ¹, Chair of Software of Discrete Apparatus and Systems, Krasnoyarsk State Technical University, St. Kirenskogo, 26, Krasnoyarsk, 660074, Russia **

**Abstract **

1. **Basic notations and concepts **

2. **Introduction: some words about permanents **

3. **Origin of the van der Waerden conjecture **

4. **Summary of results **

5. **Structure of the minimizing matrix: the necessary conditions **

6. **Mixed discriminants (volumes) and geometric inequalities for permanents **

7. **Structure of the minimizing matrix: uniqueness of the solution and proof of the conjectures **

8. **Direct corollaries **

9. **Further results and new hypotheses **

10. **Prospects for investigation and conclusion **

**References **

This chapter gives a proof and applications of the well known van der Waerden conjecture about minimum permanents of a doubly stochastic matrix. The conjecture was proved in the early 80s by G.P. Egorychev and the Kiev mathematician D.I. Falikman independently.

*Some notation*. per(*A*) is the permanent of a matrix *A *(for a definition see **Section 2 below). **

*D*(*A *1,…,*An*) is the mixed discriminant of the matrices *A *1,…, *An*.

*V*(*K*1,…, *Kn*) is the mixed volume of convex compacts *K*1,…, *Kn **n*.

*Ωn *is the set of all doubly stochastic *n *× *n *matrices.

is the set of all (0, 1)-matrices of order *n *which have exactly *k *units in each row and column.

*P, Q *are the permutation matrices of order *n*.

*Ei,j *is the matrix having 1 at place (*i*, *j*) and all other elements equal to 0.

*e *is the *n*-row of which each element is 1.

*aj*, *αi *are the *j*-th column and the *i*-th row of the matrix *A*, respectively.

*O, In *are the null and identity *n *× *n *matrices, respectively.

*Jn *is the (*n *× *n*) matrix with each element equal to 1/*n*.

*AT*, *A** are the transpose, adjoint and complex conjugate matrices to the matrix *A*, respectively.

*A*(*i*/*j*) is the (*n *− 1) × (*n *− 1) matrix derived from *A *by deleting the *i*-th row and the *j*-th column.

is the matrix of order *n *derived from *A *by replacing the *i*-th column by the *n*-vector *x *and the *j*-th column by the *n*-vector *y*.

A matrix of order *n *with non-negative elements is called *doubly stochastic *if *eA *= *e*, *AeT *= *eT*; a matrix *A *∈ *Ωn *is called *minimizing *if

Let *A *= (*aij*) be a non-negative matrix of order *n*. The matrix *A *is called *fully indecomposable *if it doesn’t contain a *k *× (*n *− *k*) null submatrix for *k *= 1,…, *n *− 1. The matrix *A *is called *partially decomposable *if it contains *k *× (*n *− *k*) null submatrix. Matrix *A *is called nearly decomposable if it is fully indecomposable and such that for each positive element of the matrix *A *the matrix *A *− *aijEij *is partially decomposable.

The concept of the permanent was first introduced independently and practically simultaneously in the well known memoirs of **J. Binet (1812) and A. Cauchy (1812). It was at this time that Binet introduced the term permanent. **

*The permanent of a square n *× *n matrix A *is defined to be the sum

**(2.1) **

where the sum is taken over all permutations of the set {1,…, *n*} or, which is the same, over all diagonals of the matrix *A*.

The permanent as a matrix function has the following characteristic properties (**Egorychev, 1980): if f (A) is a complex-valued function of n × n-matrix A over the field , then f (A) = per A, iff: **

(a) *f (A) is a homogeneous polynomial of degree n from the elements of the matrix A*.

(b) *f (A) is polyadditive and symmetric with respect to vector-rows and vector-columns of matrix A*.

(c) *f*(*In*) = 1.

For the last decade and a half the theory of permanents has been intensively developing, undergoing essential structural modifications. Among the most important achievements of this period are, in our opinion, the proof of the van der Waerden conjecture on permanents (**Egorychev, 1980, 1981; Falikman, 1981), the proof of the Tverberg conjecture on permanents (Friedland, 1982); remarkable results by V. Schevelev (1992) and A. Kamenetsky (1990, 1991) concerned with the problem of calculation of the permanents of cyclic matrices and, finally, the fundamental results by A. Razborov (1985) and A. Andreev (1985) about lower estimates of complexity for the permanent of logical matrices. **

Many difficult problems of combinatorial analysis, graph theory, linear and polylinear algebra, other areas of mathematics, statistical physics and physical chemistry can be stated and solved in terms of permanents. They basically make use of the major combinatorial properties of permanents of (0, 1)-matrices to count the number of systems of different representatives (transversals) of sets.

It is common knowledge that det *A *can be computed in poly(*n*) time. On the other hand, the fastest algorithm known for computing per *A *runs in *n*2*n*− 1 time (**Wilf, 1968; Ryser, 1963). Solid grounds for arguing that computing per A even for (0, 1)-matrices is an inherently difficult problem were first provided by L. Valiant (1979) who showed that the problem is P-complete. One implication of this result is that if P ≠ NP then there is no poly(n) time algorithm for computing per A. **

From there rises the problem of the development of new fundamental algebraic, geometric, theoretical-functional and calculating ideas and methods of computation and estimation of permanents for various classes of matrices. The celebrated van der Waerden conjecture giving a precise lower estimate for the permanents on the convex compact set Ω*n *for a long time occupied a key position in this circle of questions. This problem, in spite of many efforts, remained unresolved for over 50 years.

Biographical data about van der Waerden were given by **A.I. Borodin and A.S. Bugai (1979, p. 95): **

Barten Leendert van der Waerden is a Dutch mathematician. He was born in Amsterdam on February 2, 1903. He was a professor at the universities of Groningem, Leipzig, Amsterdam, Zürich and was involved in algebra, algebraic geometry, applications of methods of group theory to quantum theory and mathematical statistics (van der Waerden criterion). His work also dealt with the history of mathematics and astronomy in Ancient Egypt, Babylon and Greece. In 1959 his book

Science Awakening was translated into Russian. The book

Modern Algebra (1930–1931) marked the culmination of the creative period in

abstract algebra developed by his teachers E. Noether, E. Steinitz and E. Artin. This book had major influence in the training of specialists in algebra everywhere in the world, defining the character and partially the directions of further research in algebra. An expanded and modernized version titled

Algebra was published in 1976. B.L. van der Waerden applied the modern algebraic apparatus to strong justification of basic concepts in algebraic geometry. His book

Mathematical Statistics" (1957) is also widely known.

Van Lint, a well-known Dutch mathematician, wrote (1982, p. 72–76) about the previous history of the van der Waerden conjecture:

"Much of the work on permanents is in some way connected to this conjecture and about 75% of the work on permanents is less than 20 years old! … In 1926 B.L. van der Waerden proposed as a problem (!) to determine the minimal permanent among all doubly stochastic matrices. It was natural to assume that this minimum is per *Jn = n!n− n*. Let us denote by Ω*n *the set of all doubly stochastic matrices. The assertion

became known as the van der Waerden conjecture. Sometimes just showing that *n!n−n *is the minimal value is referred to as the conjecture.

This note allows me to save for posterity a humorous experience of the late sixties. Van der Waerden, retired by then, attended a meeting on combinatorics, a field he had never worked in seriously. A young mathematician was desperate to present his thesis in 20 minutes. I was sitting in the front row next to van der Waerden when the famous conjecture was mentioned by the speaker and the alleged author inquired what this famous conjecture stated!! The exasperated speaker spent a few seconds of his precious time to explain and at the end of his talk wandered over to us to read the badge of the person who had asked this inexcusable question. I could foresee what was to happen and yet, I remember how he recoiled. You needn’t worry – he recovered and now is a famous combinatorialist. The lesson for the reader is the following. If you did not know of the

conjecture" then it is comforting to realize that it was 40 years old before van der Waerden heard that it had this name.

"What is the origin of the problem? Upon my request van der Waerden went far back in his memory and came up with the following. One day in 1926 during the discussion that took place daily in Hamburg O. Schreier mentioned that G.A. Miller had proved that there is a mutual system of representatives for the right and left cosets of a subgroup *H *of a finite group *G*. At this moment van der Waerden observed that this was a property of any two partitions of a set of size *μ n *into μ subsets of size *n*. This theorem was published in Hamburger Abhandlungen

in 1927. In the note, added in the proof, van der Waerden acknowledged that he had rediscovered the theorem which is now known as the König–Hall theorem…

"In the terminology of permanents we can formulate the problem Schreier and van der Waerden were considering as follows. Let *Ai *(1 ≤ *i *≤ μ) and *Bk *(1 ≤ *k *≤ μ) be the subsets in two partitions and let *aik *:= |*Ai *∩ *Bk*|. Then, *A *= (*aik*) is a matrix with constant line sums (= *n*). The assertion that there is a mutual system of representatives of the sets *Ai *respectively of the sets *Bk *is the same as to say that per *A *> 0. At this point van der Waerden wondered what the minimal permanent, under the side condition that all line sums are 1, is? He posed this as a problem in Jber. d. D.M.V. **35 **and thus the van der Waerden conjecture was born."

Most essential in proving the van der Waerden conjecture were the results obtained by **M. Marcus and M. Newman (1959). They show that: **

(a) *If A is a minimizing matrix, then per(A(i/j)*) = per(*A*) for ∀*i, j *∈ {1,…,*n*}, *where ai,j *> 0;

(b) *If A is minimizing then it is fully indecomposable; *

(c) *The permanent has a strong local minimum at point Jn; *

(d) *If all elements of the minimizing matrix are positive, then it is equal to Jn*.

Using these results **D. London (1971) proved that if A is a minimizing matrix, then per( A(i/j)) ≥ per(A) for all i, j ∈ {1,…,n}. In 1976 T. Bang announced and in 1979 T. Bang and S. Friedland proved lower bounds for the permanent on Ωn, which are essentially of the same order as the bound of van der Waerden. **

**D. König (1916) stated that the permanent of a doubly stochastic matrix A , then per(A) > k. G. Frobenius (1917) proved that per A of a non-negative matrix is equal to 0 if and only if A contains a null submatrix of order k × (n – k + 1). D. König in his book (1936) devoted to graph theory and its applications mentioned the van der Waerden problem as an unresolved one. Birkhoff in 1946 showed that Ωn forms a convex polyhedron with the permutation matrices as vertices. This result implies that per(A) ≥ 1/((n − 1)² + 1)n− 1 for all A ∈ Ωn. M. Marcus and H. Minc improved this bound in 1962 to n− n, in 1974 O. Rothaus improved is to (n!)− n, and S. Friedland (1979) obtained the substantially better bound of 1/n!. **

**M. Marcus and M. Newman (1959) proved the validity of the van der Waerden conjecture for n = 3; P. Eberlein and G. Mudholkar (1968) and A. Gleason (1970) proved it for n = 4; P. Eberlein (1969) for n = 5. In 1962 M. Marcus and M. Newman proved the conjecture for positive semi-definite symmetric matrices, and D. Sasser with M. Slater (1967) extended this theorem to normal matrices of a certain type. The last result was somewhat improved by M. Marcus and H. Minc (1968) and extended to a larger class of matrices by S. Friedland (1974). (For other results related to the van der Waerden conjecture until 1977 see the comprehensive bibliography in the book by Minc (1978).) **

A proof of the van der Waerden conjecture appeared in 1980–1981. In his article of 1981 D. Falikman, by a method different from that of **G. Egorychev (1980, 1981), obtained the answer to the van der Waerden’s question about the minimum of the permanent on Ω n, but he didn’t prove the uniqueness statement of the conjecture. Another attempt to prove this hypothesis was made by V. Reva (1981). **

The proof of the Marcus–Newman and van der Waerden conjectures given here is typical for the theory of mixed volumes. It is, on the one hand, connected with the investigation of the structure of the minimizing matrix based on the results of *n *; and Volenec, 1989).

The proof given here of the permanent conjectures is fairly simple and is accessible to any reader familiar with the fundamentals of the linear algebra.

This section considers several fine assertions on the structure of the minimizing matrix that led **D. London to his result (1971). The reader can find the proofs of the well-known facts omitted here in, for example, the work of M. Marcus and H. Minc (1972), A. Marshall, J. Olkin (1983), R. Rockafellar (1970), H. Minc (1978). **

**Theorem 5.1.5 **

(**Birkhoff, 1946). A set of n × n doubly stochastic matrices forms a convex polyhedron with permutation matrices as vertices. In other words, if A ∈ Ωn, then **

**(5.1) **

*where P1,…, Ps are permutation matrices and *

This theorem has many applications and is one of the main results in the theory of doubly stochastic matrices. The next theorem is one of the most important results in the theory of non-negative matrices.

**Theorem 5.2 **

(**Frobenius–König, 1917). Let A be an n × n matrix. A necessary and sufficient condition for every diagonal of A to contain a zero entry is that A contains an s × t zero submatrix such that s + t = n + 1. **

In other words, if *A *is an *n *× *n *matrix, then per *A *= 0 iff *A *contains an *s × t *zero submatrix such that *s + t = n *+ 1. (For the history of this theorem see (**Minc, 1978, pp. 31–34).) **

**Theorem 5.3 **

(**König, 1916). If A ∈ Ωn, then per A > 0. **

**Assertion 5.4 **

(**London, 1971). If A = (aij) is a minimizing matrix, then **

**Assertion 5.5 **

*A non-negative matrix A of order n, n *≥ 2, *is fully indecomposable iff per*(*A*(*i/j*)) > 0 *for all i, *

**Assertion 5.6 **

(**Marcus and Newman, 1959). **

(a) *If A is a minimizing matrix, then A is fully indecomposable*.

(b) *If A *= (*aij*)*is a minimizing matrix and some aij *> 0, then per(*A*(*i*/*j*)) = per(*A*).

(c) *If the minimizing matrix is positive, then A *= *Jn*.

It is easy to see that **Theorem 5.3 is equivalent to the following assertion: any matrix A ∈ Ωn contains at least one diagonal with positive terms, thus,Theorem 5.3 follows from the Birkhoff theorem. **

The proof of **Assertion 5.6(b) in the work by Marcus and Newman (1959) used to prove Assertion 5.4 adapted the classical Lagrange multipliers method assuming A ∈ Ωn. **

The result of **Assertion 5.5 is a direct corollary of the Frobenius–König theorem. **

**Assertion 5.4 is proved by taking derivatives in all directions in a neighborhood of a minimizing matrix A. For any n × n permutation matrix P = (pij), 0 ≤θ≤ 1, define the function fP (θ) = per((1 − θ) A + θP). **

Since *A *is a minimizing matrix, then *f′P*(0) ≥ 0 for any *P*. But

where σ is the permutation corresponding to *P*. Hence,

**5.3 **

for every σ. Since the matrix *A *must be fully indecomposable (**Assertion 5.6(a)), therefore (Assertion 5.5) any entry of A lies on a diagonal all of whose other entries are positive. Thus, for every (i, j) there exists a permutation σ such that j = σ(i) and as σ(s) > 0 for all s ∈ 1,…,n, s ≠ i. **

Now, however, **Assertion 5.6(b) ensures that per( A (s/σ(s))) = per A for the same s. Hence, from (5.3) and j = σ(i) follows that per (A(i/j)) ≥ per(A). **

Consider *m *quadratic forms

in the variables *x*1,…, *xn*. Any linear combination

is again a quadratic form with coefficients

The discriminant of the form *f *is a homogeneous polynomial of degree *n *with respect to λ1,…, λ*m *with coefficients *D*(*fk*1,…, *fkn*) of λ*k*1,…, λ*kn *chosen not to depend on the order *k*1,…, *kn*. These coefficients, studied by **Aleksandrov (1937–1938), are called mixed discriminants. They are expressed in terms of coefficients of the given forms as follows **

Because of (6.1) the mixed discriminants are symmetric and polyadditive functions of its arguments and possess a series of other interesting properties (see also (Bapat, 1987)). For us the most important is the following

**Lemma 6.1 **

(Aleksandrov inequalities for mixed discriminants, 1937–1938).

(a) *Let *(*fi*), *i *= 1,…, *n *− 1, *be n *− 1 *positive definite quadratic forms and let g be an arbitrary quadratic form. Then*,

*where *α : = (*f*1,…, *fn*− 2).

(b) *Equality holds in *(6.2) *iff *

**(6.3) **

*Taking suitable limits in *(**6.2) of the coefficients in the forms, assertion (a) of Lemma 6.1 carries over to the case in which the (fi), i = 1,…,n − 1, are non-negative definite forms. **

**Lemma 6.2 **

(Geometric inequalities for permanents, **Egorychev, 1980, 1981). **

(a) *Let *(*fi*), *i *= 1,…, *n *− 1, *be n-vectors with non-negative components and let g be an arbitrary n-vector. Then*,

(b) *Let *(*fi*), *i *= 1,…, *n *− 1, *be n-vectors with positive components and let g be an arbitrary n-vector. Equality holds in *(**6.4) iff **

**(6.5) **

The results of **Lemma 6.2 follow directly from formulas (6.2), (6.3) if we note that **

**(6.6) **

where *fi *is the quadratic form with matrix *Ai *= diag(*A *1*i*,…, *ani*), *i *= 1,…, *n*. Indeed,

and

and it is easy to see that (cf. (6.1)) the coefficient at λ1,…, λ*n *in the last expression is equal to per(*A*)/*n*!.

**D. Falikman (1981) obtained an inductive proof of permanent inequalities equivalent to inequalities (6.4). **

Papers by A. Panov (**1984, 1985) and R. Bapat (1989) investigated the case of equality in (6.2) for non-negative definite forms and D. Knuth (1981) corrected the case of equality in (6.4) by assumptions weaker than in (6.5). R. Bapat also obtained the combinatorial interpretation of mixed discriminants from (0, 1)-matrices, and proved a generalization of the well-known König theorem. **

and φ be a symmetrical bilinear form on α. If φ has one positive eigenvalue and *n *− 1 negative eigenvalues we shall speak of a *Minkovsky (Lorentz) space*.

**Assertion 6.3 **

(**van Lint, 1981; Rybnikov, 1985). If the vector-columns a1,…, an − 2 have positive components, then, the quadratic form φ(x, x) = per(a1,…, an −2, x, x), x n, has the signature of Minkovsky space. Under the same assumptions the inequalities (6.4), (6.5) turn into the Cauchy-–Bounjakowsky–Schwarz inequalities in Minkovsky space. **

In conclusion of this section well give the representation of the permanent as a mixed volume yielding a family of geometric inequalities for the permanent as a mixed volume.

Let *A *+ *B *= { *a *+ *b: a ∈ A, b ∈ B*}denote the vector sum (*Minkovsky sum*) of the subsets *A *and *B **n*, and let λ *A *= {λ*a: a *∈ *A *} is the result of the homothety of *A *with coefficients λ.

**Theorem 6.17 **

(**Minkovsky, 1911). The volume of the linear combination of nonempty convex compact sets K1,…, Ks (s ≠ n, in general) with non-negative coefficients λ1,…,λs is a homogeneous polynomial of degree n with respect to λ1,…, λs: **

*where it is assumed that for the products of *λ*i which differ only in the order of the factors the coefficients have the same numerical value. The coefficients V*(*K*1,…, *Kn*)*in the expansion *(**6.7) are called the mixed volumes of convex compact sets K1,…, Kn in n. **

Let *A *be a non-negative matrix of order *n *and let *Ki, i *∈ 1,…, *n**n *induced by it

In analogy with the representation (**6.6) of the permanent as a mixed discriminant it is easy to see that (Egorychev, 1980–1981) **

**(6.9) **

Indeed, the volume of a rectangular parallelopiped

is equal to the product of the lengths of its sides

and the coefficient by λ1 … λ*n *is equal to per(*A*)/*n*!.

Formula (**6.9) allows one to obtain the following assertion for permanents of a non-negative matrix. **

**Theorem 6.18 **

(cf. Egorychev, 1983). *If A is a non-negative matrix, then, for *per(*A*) *there hold the analogs of the Brunn–Minkovsky, Aleksandrov–Fenchel, Shephard, Santalo and other inequalities, including the vector inequalities for mixed volumes in **n, as well as the corresponding analogs of the results for the various cases of equality *(see Burago and Zalgaller, 1984, Ch. 4).

The papers of **G. Ewald (1985), B. Kind and P. Kleinschmidt (1979), P. McMullen and G. Shephard (1971), M. Hochster (1972), R. Stanley (1980, 1981), L. Billera and C. Lee (1981), A. Kouchnirenko (1976), D. Bernstein (1976), B. Teissier (1979, 1982) contain several combinatorial connections of mixed volumes with combinatorial geometry which by virtue of (6.9) are valid for the permanents of non-negative matrices as well. **

For the readers’ convenience we repeat the assertions used to prove the conjectures.

**Lemma 7.1 **

(**Egorychev, 1980, 1981 – geometrical inequalities for permanents). **

(a) *Let ai, i *= 1,…, *n *− 1, *be a set of n *−1 *n-vectors with non-negative components and let g be an arbitrary n-vector. Then*,

*where *α := (*a*1,…, *a*n −2).

(b) *Let *(*ai*), *i *= 1,…, *n *− 1, *be n-vectors with positive components and let g be an arbitrary n-vector. Equality holds in *(**7.1) iff **

**(7.2) **

**Theorem 7.2 **

**(König, 1916). If A ∈ Ωn, then, per(A) > 0. **

**Assertion 7.3 **

(**London, 1971). If A is a minimizing matrix, then **

**Theorem 7.4 **

(**Egorychev, 1980). (Proof of the Marcus-Newman conjecture on permanents (1965).) If A ∈ Ωn and the inequalities **

*are valid, then*,

**Theorem 7.5 **

(**Egorychev, 1980). (Proof of the van der Waerden conjecture on permanents (1926).) **

**(7.6) **

**Proof Of Theorem 7.4 **

Expanding

by the Laplace formula, over the *j*-th and *i*-th columns, respectively, and using (**7.1) we get **

Inequalities (**7.8) combined with assumption (7.4) give a system of n² inequalities for the n² numbers per(A (i/j)), i, j ∈ {1,…, n}. **

We show that in this case per(*A *(*i/j*) = *per A, i, j *∈ {1,…, *n}*. Assume the opposite, i.e. that there exists a pair *r, s *∈ {1,…, *n*} such that per(*A(r/s)*) > per *A*. Since *A *∈ Ω*n *there is some *t *∈ {1,…,*n*} such that *art *> 0. Then, by (**7.8), **

where the strict inequality follows from inequalities (**7.4), art > 0, per(A (r/s) > per(A), per A > 0 (Theorem 7.2), and A ∈ Ωn. The contradiction obtained proves the theorem. **

Let *A *be a minimizing matrix. Then, by London’s result, the inequalities (**7.4) hold. From Theorem (7.4) follows **

**Lemma 7.6 **

(**Egorychev, 1980). If A is a minimizing matrix, then **

**Lemma 7.7 **

(**Egorychev, 1980). If A is a minimizing matrix, then for each i, j ∈ {1,…,n} **

*will be also minimizing matrix. Aθ is obtained from the matrix A with the help of a θ-transform of the i-th and j-th columns of the matrix A*.

**Proof **

It is easy to see that *A′ *∈ Ω*n*. The equality per(*A *θ) = Per(*A*) follows immediately from the fact that per(A) is a multilinear symmetric function of the columns of the matrix *A*, the Laplace formulas, the equalities (**7.9), and A ∈ Ωn. **

**7.5 Proof Of Theorem **

It is clear that a minimizing matrix cannot be (up to permutation of rows and columns) a matrix of the form

where *A n*− 1 ∈ Ω*n*− 1, since in this case (**Lemma 7.6) per(A(1/1)) = per( A(1/i)) = 0 for all i ∈ {2,…, n}, i.e. per A = 0, a contradiction with Theorem 7.2. **

Now we show that if A is a minimizing matrix, then *A = Jn*. Let some column of the matrix *A*, say *an*, be different from the n-column *eT/n*. Then, it is easy to see that by **Lemma 7.7 for all i, j ∈ {1,…,n − 1}, i ≠ j, we can obtain in a finite number of steps a minimizing matrix B = (b1,…, bn − 1, an), in which every component of the first n − 1 columns is positive. This follows from the fact that A does not contain a 1. From the inequalities (7.1), we have **

By virtue of equalities (**7.9) the minimizing matrix B (Lemmas 7.6 and 7.7) we obtain equality in (7.10). The positivity of the components b1,…,b n − 1allows us to assert immediately (Lemma 7.1, the case of equality) that an = λi,bi for all i ∈ {1,…, n − 1}. Since the sum of the components of the vector bi as well as of the vector an is equal to 1, we have an = bi for all i ∈ {1,…,n − 1}. Since B ∈ Ωn, we have **

a contradiction. Thus, *A *= *Jn *and the proof of the theorem is complete.

**Remark 7.8 **

The reduction from **Theorem 7.4 to Theorem 7.5 was well known (see, for example, Minc (1978, p. 101, Problem 18)). Here we gave a simple geometric proof of this reduction. **

The proof of conjectures given here, from the necessary conditions to geometric inequalities (**7.1), (7.2), is typical for the theory of mixed volumes in the solution of isoperimetric problems. However, specialists usually use such mixed discriminants (volumes) where only two, sometimes three, forms (convex compacts) are different: in our proof all forms are used equally. **

As a direct corollary of **. Among them are the lower bounds for the number of Latin rectangles and squares (see also (Erdõs and Kaplansky, 1946; Yamamoto, 1951, 1956; Gessel 1987; Denes and Keedwell, 1991) etc.) for the number of nonisomorphic Steiner triples (Wilson, 1974) and for the key constant λ d in the d-dimensional dimer problem (Hammersley, 1968, 1969; Dubois, 1974; Minc, 1978a, 1980). These bounds are essential improvements of previously known bounds. **

The results mentioned above brought about a structural reorganization of sections of combinatorial theory connected with permanents. We should also note that the problem of estimating λ*d *belongs to an extensive class of mathematical and physical problems connected with finding the number of dimer coverings of the lattice that can be realized by the permanent of special (0, 1)-matrices (see, for example, the surveys (**Percus, 1971) and (Montroll, 1964) about applications of permanents in statistical mechanics and the two-dimensional Ising model in ferromagnetism). **

One of the reasons for the interest in computing per(*A*) is that a (0, 1)-matrix *A *= (*aij*) can be viewed as an adjacency matrix of a bipartite graph, *H *= (*X, Y, E*), where *X *corresponds to the rows in *A, Y *to the columns in *A*, and *aij *= 1 if there is an edge between *Xi *and *Yj*. The value per(*A*) is exactly the number of perfect matchings (1-factors) in *H*. This matter finds numerical applications in operations research. A. Schrijver (**1982, 1983) published a survey on recent developments of lower and upper bounds for permanents including his interpretation of the van der Waerden conjecture and the well-known Brégman-Minc upper bound (Brégman, 1973; Minc, 1978, Ch. 6). He applied these results to obtain a series of new and hypothetical bounds for the number of perfect matchings, 1-factorizations (edge-colorings), bipartite graphs, and the number of Eulerian orientations of graphs. The reader can find other applications of the permanent of (0, 1)-matrices in estimating characteristics of various types of graphs in numerous papers (see, for example, (Caianiello, 1953, 1956; Harary, 1969; Hartfiel and Spellman, 1972; Dubois, 1974)). **

**D. London (1982) used the result of Theorem 7.6 to characterize real zeros of a polynomial defined by the composition of two polynomials and T. Ando (1989) used it to analyze majorization problems. **

The van der Waerden conjecture, proved in the early 80s, generated numerous papers (**, 1977; Lagaris, 1982; Minc, 1982, 1983; Schrijver, 1982, 1983; Friedland, 1982; Bapat, 1984, 1986; Rybnikov, 1985; London and Minc, 1989) etc., discussing the history of the problem and giving improved and modified versions of the proofs of Egorychev (1980) and Falikman (1981). **

The main result and the method used in the work by **Egorychev (1980) were essentially used and developed to solve the problem of the permanent minimum at various faces of Ω n denote a set of n × n where σij , then **

.

Generalizing the previously obtained results, **S. Hwang (1985) introduced for a (0, 1)-matrix A = (aij) of order n the concept of the barycenter matrix Ã := (aijper(A (i/j)))/per(A) ∈ Ωn and the staircase matrix, and A. Brualdi (1985) stated the problem of the characterization of these classes of matrices and formulated a question of the characterization of faces at Ωn where the permanent minimum is achieved on the barycenter matrix (see also (Minc, 1987; Hwang, 1985)). **

Finally, the main result and the methods of **G. Egorychev (1980), including applications of the geometric inequalities (7.1), (7.2), were efficiently used in numerous articles to prove extremal conjectures for the permanent and other matrix functions on Ω n and for other classes of matrices. Most successful in this direction was S. Friedland (1982) proving the Tverberg conjecture (1963) about the minimum of the function σk(A ), 1 ≤ k ≤ n, equal to the sum of the permanents for all k × k submatrices of a matrix A. That article efficiently used a representation of function σk(A ) by the permanent on Ωn faces. **

The next nontrivial generalization of the van der Waerden conjecture was proposed by E. Dittert (**Minc, 1983, Conjecture 28): let Kn be the set of non-negative n × n matrices the sum of whose entries is n. Then, **

where *ci *and *rj *denote the *i*-th row and the *j*-th column sums of the matrix *A*, respectively. Equality holds in (9.2) iff *A = Jn*. Partial progress in the proof of this conjecture was achieved as the basis of **Theorem 7.5 and inequalities (7.1), (7.2) (Sinkhorn, 1984; Hwang, 1986, 1986a, 1987, 1989, 1990; Egorychev, 1994). **

Many elegant problems and conjectures for permanents and related matrix functions on various classes of matrices were published recently (**Minc, 1978, 1993; Marcus, Minc, 1965; Grone and Merris, 1987; Minc, 1978; book Permanents: theory and applications, Krasnoyarsk, 1990; Egorychev, 1994). Among them is an explicit representation of a problem of the century and a dominant conjecture for Schur functions (dominance conjecture). The problems and conjectures for permanents have as a rule a simple formulation but often are very difficult to solve, as is often the case with problems of discrete mathematics. The difficulty in solving them lies not only and not so much in enumerating a lot of variants but is inherent in combinatorial analysis as a whole. The practice of solving them shows that some conjectures appearing almost obvious from their formulation turn out to be invalid. Practice shows also that to solve problems and conjectures it is often necessary to use the apparatus of a series of fundamental models and methods from various sections of modern mathematics. **

The analysis of the conjectures and problems for permanents allows us to conclude that research in this field holds much promise in the following interconnected directions:

*n *(see **Ponstein, 1967; Cottle and Ferland, 1971, 1972; Martos, 1969, 1971; Ferland, 1980). The latter direction emerged, in its turn, from consideration of the problems of quadratic programming and approximation theory (Micchelli, 1986) and finds application in probability theory (Bapat, 1988, 1989a). Making use of several characterizations of the class of subpositive definite quadratic forms (see, for example, (Ferland, 1980)), Bapat (1984) gave some improvement of the result of Theorem 7.5. This research belongs to one of the more promising lines of the matrix combinatorial analysis which has seen rapid progress in recent years (see Maybee, 1988; Johnson, 1988; Brualdi, 1990 etc.); **

– to pass to space matrices and the consideration of matrix functions. Analysis of certain problems for permanents shows them to appear more natural when viewed in terms of a problem for a space matrix permanent. This isn’t surprising if for no other reason than the representation (**6.6) of the permanent as a mixed discriminant from matrices A1,…,An can be considered as a representation of a space matrix with sections A1,…,An. A. Gasparyan (1984) and A. Hovansky (1984) found a series of new inequalities for hyperbolic forms (polynomials) for space matrices, while B. Bapat (1986) wrote down analogs of the inequalities (7.1) for **

mixed Schur functions;

– it was Gilbert who noted that the relations of the mixed volumes with other fields of mathematics have been settled completely. Aleksandrov (1937–1938) already noted that the coefficients of the characteristic polynomial of a matrix *A *are mixed discriminants of it and the unit matrix. However, this relationship remained unexploited in research in linear and polylinear algebra. G. Egorychev (1990, 1993, 1994a) develops matrix analysis on numerical fields with nontrivial operations. Introduced and studied are notions and properties for a certain class of φ-mixed discriminants, polyadditive relative to the operations introduced (for numbers and matrices); there are in particular relations with the operation of parallel summation of matrices and the problem of ordering non-negative definite matrices (**Meenakshi, 1987; Anderson and Duffin, 1969; Mitra, 1991); **

– to study definitions, properties, and inequalities of permanents and mixed discriminants of matrices over different (partially ordered) algebraic systems. Permanents of a distributive lattice emerged in the work of Skornyakov and Egorova (1984); for permanents with logical variables, see (Razborov, 1985); permanents over finite fields emerged in investigations of the four-color problem (see Shor, 1990); permanents over (partially) ordered fields turned up in the work of Golovanov, Egorychev and Moiseenko (1987). Still more permanents arise in studies of many other authors in the most varied fields of mathematics. Y. Egorychev and Ja. Nuzhin, for example (in press), gave a definition and studied the properties of permanents over noncommutative rings. Studies of φ-mixed discriminants mentioned in the previous paragraph also allow one, in the opinion of the author, to touch upon different aspects of the theory of matrix functions over different algebraic systems presented in many articles of Vol. 1 of this series Handbook of Algebra

. They also reveal relations with the classical spectral theory of matrices, graph theory and electrical engineering (see, for example, (Egorychev and Moiseenko, 1990a; the survey by Tsvetkovich, 1984, and Strok, 1990, on spectral theory of matrices; Ando and Kubo, 1989, 1990));

– and, finally, of promise for the development of the geometric theory of mixed discriminants (and permanents) is the research making use of their representation as the valuation function in valuation rings (see the survey (MacMillan and Schneider, 1983; **Rota, 1973; Barnabei, Brini and Rota, 1986)). This research based on fundamental studies of geometric nature going on for the last two centuries can, in my opinion, essentially enrich the apparatus of enumerative combinatorial analysis as a whole. **

The author is grateful to the participants of the seminar on discrete mathematics in Krasnoyarsk for useful remarks concerning this chapter.

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