On Approximating Degree-Bounded Network Design Problems

Authors Xiangyu Guo, Guy Kortsarz, Bundit Laekhanukit , Shi Li, Daniel Vaz, Jiayi Xian

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Xiangyu Guo
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University at Buffalo, NY, USA
Guy Kortsarz
  • Department of Computer Science, Rutgers University Camden, NJ, USA
Bundit Laekhanukit
  • ITCS, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, China
Shi Li
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University at Buffalo, NY, USA
Daniel Vaz
  • Operations Research Group, TU Munich, Germany
Jiayi Xian
  • Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University at Buffalo, NY, USA

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Xiangyu Guo, Guy Kortsarz, Bundit Laekhanukit, Shi Li, Daniel Vaz, and Jiayi Xian. On Approximating Degree-Bounded Network Design Problems. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2020). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 176, pp. 39:1-39:21, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2020)


Directed Steiner Tree (DST) is a central problem in combinatorial optimization and theoretical computer science: Given a directed graph G = (V, E) with edge costs c ∈ ℝ_{≥ 0}^E, a root r ∈ V and k terminals K ⊆ V, we need to output a minimum-cost arborescence in G that contains an rrightarrow t path for every t ∈ K. Recently, Grandoni, Laekhanukit and Li, and independently Ghuge and Nagarajan, gave quasi-polynomial time O(log²k/log log k)-approximation algorithms for the problem, which are tight under popular complexity assumptions. In this paper, we consider the more general Degree-Bounded Directed Steiner Tree (DB-DST) problem, where we are additionally given a degree bound d_v on each vertex v ∈ V, and we require that every vertex v in the output tree has at most d_v children. We give a quasi-polynomial time (O(log n log k), O(log² n))-bicriteria approximation: The algorithm produces a solution with cost at most O(log nlog k) times the cost of the optimum solution that violates the degree constraints by at most a factor of O(log²n). This is the first non-trivial result for the problem. While our cost-guarantee is nearly optimal, the degree violation factor of O(log²n) is an O(log n)-factor away from the approximation lower bound of Ω(log n) from the Set Cover hardness. The hardness result holds even on the special case of the Degree-Bounded Group Steiner Tree problem on trees (DB-GST-T). With the hope of closing the gap, we study the question of whether the degree violation factor can be made tight for this special case. We answer the question in the affirmative by giving an (O(log nlog k), O(log n))-bicriteria approximation algorithm for DB-GST-T.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Theory of computation → Routing and network design problems
  • Directed Steiner Tree
  • Group Steiner Tree
  • degree-bounded


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