Document

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 286, 27th International Conference on Principles of Distributed Systems (OPODIS 2023)

Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithms are a widely-used algorithmic tool for sampling from high-dimensional distributions, a notable example is the equilibirum distribution of graphical models. The Glauber dynamics, also known as the Gibbs sampler, is the simplest example of an MCMC algorithm; the transitions of the chain update the configuration at a randomly chosen coordinate at each step. Several works have studied distributed versions of the Glauber dynamics and we extend these efforts to a more general family of Markov chains. An important combinatorial problem in the study of MCMC algorithms is random colorings. Given a graph G of maximum degree Δ and an integer k ≥ Δ+1, the goal is to generate a random proper vertex k-coloring of G.
Jerrum (1995) proved that the Glauber dynamics has O(nlog{n}) mixing time when k > 2Δ. Fischer and Ghaffari (2018), and independently Feng, Hayes, and Yin (2018), presented a parallel and distributed version of the Glauber dynamics which converges in O(log{n}) rounds for k > (2+ε)Δ for any ε > 0. We improve this result to k > (11/6-δ)Δ for a fixed δ > 0. This matches the state of the art for randomly sampling colorings of general graphs in the sequential setting. Whereas previous works focused on distributed variants of the Glauber dynamics, our work presents a parallel and distributed version of the more general flip dynamics presented by Vigoda (2000) (and refined by Chen, Delcourt, Moitra, Perarnau, and Postle (2019)), which recolors local maximal two-colored components in each step.

Charlie Carlson, Daniel Frishberg, and Eric Vigoda. Improved Distributed Algorithms for Random Colorings. In 27th International Conference on Principles of Distributed Systems (OPODIS 2023). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 286, pp. 13:1-13:18, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2024)

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@InProceedings{carlson_et_al:LIPIcs.OPODIS.2023.13, author = {Carlson, Charlie and Frishberg, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Improved Distributed Algorithms for Random Colorings}}, booktitle = {27th International Conference on Principles of Distributed Systems (OPODIS 2023)}, pages = {13:1--13:18}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-308-9}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2024}, volume = {286}, editor = {Bessani, Alysson and D\'{e}fago, Xavier and Nakamura, Junya and Wada, Koichi and Yamauchi, Yukiko}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.OPODIS.2023.13}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-195030}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.OPODIS.2023.13}, annote = {Keywords: Distributed Graph Algorithms, Local Algorithms, Coloring, Glauber Dynamics, Sampling, Markov Chains} }

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RANDOM

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 275, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2023)

We study the mixing time of the single-site update Markov chain, known as the Glauber dynamics, for generating a random independent set of a tree. Our focus is obtaining optimal convergence results for arbitrary trees. We consider the more general problem of sampling from the Gibbs distribution in the hard-core model where independent sets are weighted by a parameter λ > 0; the special case λ = 1 corresponds to the uniform distribution over all independent sets. Previous work of Martinelli, Sinclair and Weitz (2004) obtained optimal mixing time bounds for the complete Δ-regular tree for all λ. However, Restrepo et al. (2014) showed that for sufficiently large λ there are bounded-degree trees where optimal mixing does not hold. Recent work of Eppstein and Frishberg (2022) proved a polynomial mixing time bound for the Glauber dynamics for arbitrary trees, and more generally for graphs of bounded tree-width.
We establish an optimal bound on the relaxation time (i.e., inverse spectral gap) of O(n) for the Glauber dynamics for unweighted independent sets on arbitrary trees. Moreover, for λ ≤ .44 we prove an optimal mixing time bound of O(n log n). We stress that our results hold for arbitrary trees and there is no dependence on the maximum degree Δ. Interestingly, our results extend (far) beyond the uniqueness threshold which is on the order λ = O(1/Δ). Our proof approach is inspired by recent work on spectral independence. In fact, we prove that spectral independence holds with a constant independent of the maximum degree for any tree, but this does not imply mixing for general trees as the optimal mixing results of Chen, Liu, and Vigoda (2021) only apply for bounded degree graphs. We instead utilize the combinatorial nature of independent sets to directly prove approximate tensorization of variance/entropy via a non-trivial inductive proof.

Charilaos Efthymiou, Thomas P. Hayes, Daniel Štefankovič, and Eric Vigoda. Optimal Mixing via Tensorization for Random Independent Sets on Arbitrary Trees. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2023). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 275, pp. 33:1-33:16, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2023)

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@InProceedings{efthymiou_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2023.33, author = {Efthymiou, Charilaos and Hayes, Thomas P. and \v{S}tefankovi\v{c}, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Optimal Mixing via Tensorization for Random Independent Sets on Arbitrary Trees}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2023)}, pages = {33:1--33:16}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-296-9}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2023}, volume = {275}, editor = {Megow, Nicole and Smith, Adam}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2023.33}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-188589}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2023.33}, annote = {Keywords: MCMC, Mixing Time, Independent Sets, Hard-Core Model, Approximate Counting Algorithms, Sampling Algorithms} }

Document

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 274, 31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023)

We present the first polynomial-time algorithm to exactly compute the number of labeled chordal graphs on n vertices. Our algorithm solves a more general problem: given n and ω as input, it computes the number of ω-colorable labeled chordal graphs on n vertices, using O(n⁷) arithmetic operations. A standard sampling-to-counting reduction then yields a polynomial-time exact sampler that generates an ω-colorable labeled chordal graph on n vertices uniformly at random. Our counting algorithm improves upon the previous best result by Wormald (1985), which computes the number of labeled chordal graphs on n vertices in time exponential in n.
An implementation of the polynomial-time counting algorithm gives the number of labeled chordal graphs on up to 30 vertices in less than three minutes on a standard desktop computer. Previously, the number of labeled chordal graphs was only known for graphs on up to 15 vertices.

Úrsula Hébert-Johnson, Daniel Lokshtanov, and Eric Vigoda. Counting and Sampling Labeled Chordal Graphs in Polynomial Time. In 31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 274, pp. 58:1-58:17, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2023)

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@InProceedings{hebertjohnson_et_al:LIPIcs.ESA.2023.58, author = {H\'{e}bert-Johnson, \'{U}rsula and Lokshtanov, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Counting and Sampling Labeled Chordal Graphs in Polynomial Time}}, booktitle = {31st Annual European Symposium on Algorithms (ESA 2023)}, pages = {58:1--58:17}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-295-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2023}, volume = {274}, editor = {G{\o}rtz, Inge Li and Farach-Colton, Martin and Puglisi, Simon J. and Herman, Grzegorz}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ESA.2023.58}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-187119}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ESA.2023.58}, annote = {Keywords: Counting algorithms, graph sampling, chordal graphs} }

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Track A: Algorithms, Complexity and Games

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 229, 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)

We study the performance of Markov chains for the q-state ferromagnetic Potts model on random regular graphs. While the cases of the grid and the complete graph are by now well-understood, the case of random regular graphs has resisted a detailed analysis and, in fact, even analysing the properties of the Potts distribution has remained elusive. It is conjectured that the performance of Markov chains is dictated by metastability phenomena, i.e., the presence of "phases" (clusters) in the sample space where Markov chains with local update rules, such as the Glauber dynamics, are bound to take exponential time to escape, and therefore cause slow mixing. The phases that are believed to drive these metastability phenomena in the case of the Potts model emerge as local, rather than global, maxima of the so-called Bethe functional, and previous approaches of analysing these phases based on optimisation arguments fall short of the task.
Our first contribution is to detail the emergence of the metastable phases for the q-state Potts model on the d-regular random graph for all integers q,d ≥ 3, and establish that for an interval of temperatures, delineated by the uniqueness and a broadcasting threshold on the d-regular tree, the two phases coexist. The proofs are based on a conceptual connection between spatial properties and the structure of the Potts distribution on the random regular graph, rather than complicated moment calculations. This significantly refines earlier results by Helmuth, Jenssen, and Perkins who had established phase coexistence for a small interval around the so-called ordered-disordered threshold (via different arguments) that applied for large q and d ≥ 5.
Based on our new structural understanding of the model, we obtain various algorithmic consequences. We first complement recent fast mixing results for Glauber dynamics by Blanca and Gheissari below the uniqueness threshold, showing an exponential lower bound on the mixing time above the uniqueness threshold. Then, we obtain tight results even for the non-local and more elaborate Swendsen-Wang chain, where we establish slow mixing/metastability for the whole interval of temperatures where the chain is conjectured to mix slowly on the random regular graph. The key is to bound the conductance of the chains using a random graph "planting" argument combined with delicate bounds on random-graph percolation.

Amin Coja-Oghlan, Andreas Galanis, Leslie Ann Goldberg, Jean Bernoulli Ravelomanana, Daniel Štefankovič, and Eric Vigoda. Metastability of the Potts Ferromagnet on Random Regular Graphs. In 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 229, pp. 45:1-45:20, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2022)

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@InProceedings{cojaoghlan_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.45, author = {Coja-Oghlan, Amin and Galanis, Andreas and Goldberg, Leslie Ann and Ravelomanana, Jean Bernoulli and \v{S}tefankovi\v{c}, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Metastability of the Potts Ferromagnet on Random Regular Graphs}}, booktitle = {49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)}, pages = {45:1--45:20}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-235-8}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2022}, volume = {229}, editor = {Boja\'{n}czyk, Miko{\l}aj and Merelli, Emanuela and Woodruff, David P.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.45}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-163865}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.45}, annote = {Keywords: Markov chains, sampling, random regular graph, Potts model} }

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Track A: Algorithms, Complexity and Games

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 229, 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)

We study the computational complexity of estimating local observables for Gibbs distributions. A simple combinatorial example is the average size of an independent set in a graph. A recent work of Galanis et al (2021) established NP-hardness of approximating the average size of an independent set utilizing hardness of the corresponding optimization problem and the related phase transition behavior. We instead consider settings where the underlying optimization problem is easily solvable. Our main contribution is to classify the complexity of approximating a wide class of observables via a generic reduction from approximate counting to the problem of estimating local observables. The key idea is to use the observables to interpolate the counting problem.
Using this new approach, we are able to study observables on bipartite graphs where the underlying optimization problem is easy but the counting problem is believed to be hard. The most-well studied class of graphs that was excluded from previous hardness results were bipartite graphs. We establish hardness for estimating the average size of the independent set in bipartite graphs of maximum degree 6; more generally, we show tight hardness results for general vertex-edge observables for antiferromagnetic 2-spin systems on bipartite graphs. Our techniques go beyond 2-spin systems, and for the ferromagnetic Potts model we establish hardness of approximating the number of monochromatic edges in the same region as known hardness of approximate counting results.

Andreas Galanis, Daniel Štefankovič, and Eric Vigoda. Approximating Observables Is as Hard as Counting. In 49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 229, pp. 63:1-63:18, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2022)

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@InProceedings{galanis_et_al:LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.63, author = {Galanis, Andreas and \v{S}tefankovi\v{c}, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Approximating Observables Is as Hard as Counting}}, booktitle = {49th International Colloquium on Automata, Languages, and Programming (ICALP 2022)}, pages = {63:1--63:18}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-235-8}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2022}, volume = {229}, editor = {Boja\'{n}czyk, Miko{\l}aj and Merelli, Emanuela and Woodruff, David P.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.63}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-164047}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.ICALP.2022.63}, annote = {Keywords: Approximate Counting, Averages, Phase Transitions, Random Structures} }

Document

RANDOM

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 207, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2021)

The Swendsen-Wang algorithm is a sophisticated, widely-used Markov chain for sampling from the Gibbs distribution for the ferromagnetic Ising and Potts models. This chain has proved difficult to analyze, due in part to the global nature of its updates. We present optimal bounds on the convergence rate of the Swendsen-Wang algorithm for the complete d-ary tree. Our bounds extend to the non-uniqueness region and apply to all boundary conditions. We show that the spatial mixing conditions known as Variance Mixing and Entropy Mixing, introduced in the study of local Markov chains by Martinelli et al. (2003), imply Ω(1) spectral gap and O(log n) mixing time, respectively, for the Swendsen-Wang dynamics on the d-ary tree. We also show that these bounds are asymptotically optimal. As a consequence, we establish Θ(log n) mixing for the Swendsen-Wang dynamics for all boundary conditions throughout the tree uniqueness region; in fact, our bounds hold beyond the uniqueness threshold for the Ising model, and for the q-state Potts model when q is small with respect to d. Our proofs feature a novel spectral view of the Variance Mixing condition inspired by several recent rapid mixing results on high-dimensional expanders and utilize recent work on block factorization of entropy under spatial mixing conditions.

Antonio Blanca, Zongchen Chen, Daniel Štefankovič, and Eric Vigoda. The Swendsen-Wang Dynamics on Trees. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2021). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 207, pp. 43:1-43:15, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2021)

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@InProceedings{blanca_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2021.43, author = {Blanca, Antonio and Chen, Zongchen and \v{S}tefankovi\v{c}, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{The Swendsen-Wang Dynamics on Trees}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2021)}, pages = {43:1--43:15}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-207-5}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2021}, volume = {207}, editor = {Wootters, Mary and Sanit\`{a}, Laura}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2021.43}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-147366}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX/RANDOM.2021.43}, annote = {Keywords: Markov Chains, mixing times, Ising and Potts models, Swendsen-Wang dynamics, trees} }

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RANDOM

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 145, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)

For spin systems, such as the hard-core model on independent sets weighted by fugacity lambda>0, efficient algorithms for the associated approximate counting/sampling problems typically apply in the high-temperature region, corresponding to low fugacity. Recent work of Jenssen, Keevash and Perkins (2019) yields an FPTAS for approximating the partition function (and an efficient sampling algorithm) on bounded-degree (bipartite) expander graphs for the hard-core model at sufficiently high fugacity, and also the ferromagnetic Potts model at sufficiently low temperatures. Their method is based on using the cluster expansion to obtain a complex zero-free region for the partition function of a polymer model, and then approximating this partition function using the polynomial interpolation method of Barvinok. We present a simple discrete-time Markov chain for abstract polymer models, and present an elementary proof of rapid mixing of this new chain under sufficient decay of the polymer weights. Applying these general polymer results to the hard-core and ferromagnetic Potts models on bounded-degree (bipartite) expander graphs yields fast algorithms with running time O(n log n) for the Potts model and O(n^2 log n) for the hard-core model, in contrast to typical running times of n^{O(log Delta)} for algorithms based on Barvinok’s polynomial interpolation method on graphs of maximum degree Delta. In addition, our approach via our polymer model Markov chain is conceptually simpler as it circumvents the zero-free analysis and the generalization to complex parameters. Finally, we combine our results for the hard-core and ferromagnetic Potts models with standard Markov chain comparison tools to obtain polynomial mixing time for the usual spin system Glauber dynamics restricted to even and odd or "red" dominant portions of the respective state spaces.

Zongchen Chen, Andreas Galanis, Leslie Ann Goldberg, Will Perkins, James Stewart, and Eric Vigoda. Fast Algorithms at Low Temperatures via Markov Chains. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 145, pp. 41:1-41:14, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2019)

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@InProceedings{chen_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.41, author = {Chen, Zongchen and Galanis, Andreas and Goldberg, Leslie Ann and Perkins, Will and Stewart, James and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Fast Algorithms at Low Temperatures via Markov Chains}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)}, pages = {41:1--41:14}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-125-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2019}, volume = {145}, editor = {Achlioptas, Dimitris and V\'{e}gh, L\'{a}szl\'{o} A.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.41}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-112560}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.41}, annote = {Keywords: Markov chains, approximate counting, Potts model, hard-core model, expander graphs} }

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RANDOM

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 145, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)

Strong spatial mixing (SSM) is a form of correlation decay that has played an essential role in the design of approximate counting algorithms for spin systems. A notable example is the algorithm of Weitz (2006) for the hard-core model on weighted independent sets. We study SSM for the q-colorings problem on the infinite (d+1)-regular tree. Weak spatial mixing (WSM) captures whether the influence of the leaves on the root vanishes as the height of the tree grows. Jonasson (2002) established WSM when q>d+1. In contrast, in SSM, we first fix a coloring on a subset of internal vertices, and we again ask if the influence of the leaves on the root is vanishing. It was known that SSM holds on the (d+1)-regular tree when q>alpha d where alpha ~~ 1.763... is a constant that has arisen in a variety of results concerning random colorings. Here we improve on this bound by showing SSM for q>1.59d. Our proof establishes an L^2 contraction for the BP operator. For the contraction we bound the norm of the BP Jacobian by exploiting combinatorial properties of the coloring of the tree.

Charilaos Efthymiou, Andreas Galanis, Thomas P. Hayes, Daniel Štefankovič, and Eric Vigoda. Improved Strong Spatial Mixing for Colorings on Trees. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 145, pp. 48:1-48:16, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2019)

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@InProceedings{efthymiou_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.48, author = {Efthymiou, Charilaos and Galanis, Andreas and Hayes, Thomas P. and \v{S}tefankovi\v{c}, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Improved Strong Spatial Mixing for Colorings on Trees}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)}, pages = {48:1--48:16}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-125-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2019}, volume = {145}, editor = {Achlioptas, Dimitris and V\'{e}gh, L\'{a}szl\'{o} A.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.48}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-112630}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.48}, annote = {Keywords: colorings, regular tree, spatial mixing, phase transitions} }

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RANDOM

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 145, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)

The random-cluster (FK) model is a key tool for the study of phase transitions and for the design of efficient Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) sampling algorithms for the Ising/Potts model. It is well-known that in the high-temperature region beta<beta_c(q) of the q-state Ising/Potts model on an n x n box Lambda_n of the integer lattice Z^2, spin correlations decay exponentially fast; this property holds even arbitrarily close to the boundary of Lambda_n and uniformly over all boundary conditions. A direct consequence of this property is that the corresponding single-site update Markov chain, known as the Glauber dynamics, mixes in optimal O(n^2 log{n}) steps on Lambda_{n} for all choices of boundary conditions. We study the effect of boundary conditions on the FK-dynamics, the analogous Glauber dynamics for the random-cluster model.
On Lambda_n the random-cluster model with parameters (p,q) has a sharp phase transition at p = p_c(q). Unlike the Ising/Potts model, the random-cluster model has non-local interactions which can be forced by boundary conditions: external wirings of boundary vertices of Lambda_n. We consider the broad and natural class of boundary conditions that are realizable as a configuration on Z^2 \ Lambda_n. Such boundary conditions can have many macroscopic wirings and impose long-range correlations even at very high temperatures (p << p_c(q)). In this paper, we prove that when q>1 and p != p_c(q) the mixing time of the FK-dynamics is polynomial in n for every realizable boundary condition. Previously, for boundary conditions that do not carry long-range information (namely wired and free), Blanca and Sinclair (2017) had proved that the FK-dynamics in the same setting mixes in optimal O(n^2 log n) time. To illustrate the difficulties introduced by general boundary conditions, we also construct a class of non-realizable boundary conditions that induce slow (stretched-exponential) convergence at high temperatures.

Antonio Blanca, Reza Gheissari, and Eric Vigoda. Random-Cluster Dynamics in Z^2: Rapid Mixing with General Boundary Conditions. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 145, pp. 67:1-67:19, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2019)

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@InProceedings{blanca_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.67, author = {Blanca, Antonio and Gheissari, Reza and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Random-Cluster Dynamics in Z^2: Rapid Mixing with General Boundary Conditions}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2019)}, pages = {67:1--67:19}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-125-2}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2019}, volume = {145}, editor = {Achlioptas, Dimitris and V\'{e}gh, L\'{a}szl\'{o} A.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.67}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-112827}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2019.67}, annote = {Keywords: Markov chain, mixing time, random-cluster model, Glauber dynamics, spatial mixing} }

Document

**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 116, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018)

The Swendsen-Wang dynamics is a popular algorithm for sampling from the Gibbs distribution for the ferromagnetic Ising model on a graph G=(V,E). The dynamics is a "global" Markov chain which is conjectured to converge to equilibrium in O(|V|^{1/4}) steps for any graph G at any (inverse) temperature beta. It was recently proved by Guo and Jerrum (2017) that the Swendsen-Wang dynamics has polynomial mixing time on any graph at all temperatures, yet there are few results providing o(|V|) upper bounds on its convergence time.
We prove fast convergence of the Swendsen-Wang dynamics on general graphs in the tree uniqueness region of the ferromagnetic Ising model. In particular, when beta < beta_c(d) where beta_c(d) denotes the uniqueness/non-uniqueness threshold on infinite d-regular trees, we prove that the relaxation time (i.e., the inverse spectral gap) of the Swendsen-Wang dynamics is Theta(1) on any graph of maximum degree d >= 3. Our proof utilizes a version of the Swendsen-Wang dynamics which only updates isolated vertices. We establish that this variant of the Swendsen-Wang dynamics has mixing time O(log{|V|}) and relaxation time Theta(1) on any graph of maximum degree d for all beta < beta_c(d). We believe that this Markov chain may be of independent interest, as it is a monotone Swendsen-Wang type chain. As part of our proofs, we provide modest extensions of the technology of Mossel and Sly (2013) for analyzing mixing times and of the censoring result of Peres and Winkler (2013). Both of these results are for the Glauber dynamics, and we extend them here to general monotone Markov chains. This class of dynamics includes for example the heat-bath block dynamics, for which we obtain new tight mixing time bounds.

Antonio Blanca, Zongchen Chen, and Eric Vigoda. Swendsen-Wang Dynamics for General Graphs in the Tree Uniqueness Region. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 116, pp. 32:1-32:18, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2018)

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@InProceedings{blanca_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.32, author = {Blanca, Antonio and Chen, Zongchen and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Swendsen-Wang Dynamics for General Graphs in the Tree Uniqueness Region}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018)}, pages = {32:1--32:18}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-085-9}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2018}, volume = {116}, editor = {Blais, Eric and Jansen, Klaus and D. P. Rolim, Jos\'{e} and Steurer, David}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.32}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-94365}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.32}, annote = {Keywords: Swendsen-Wang dynamics, mixing time, relaxation time, spatial mixing, censoring} }

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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 116, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018)

We consider the problem of sampling from the Potts model on random regular graphs. It is conjectured that sampling is possible when the temperature of the model is in the so-called uniqueness regime of the regular tree, but positive algorithmic results have been for the most part elusive. In this paper, for all integers q >= 3 and Delta >= 3, we develop algorithms that produce samples within error o(1) from the q-state Potts model on random Delta-regular graphs, whenever the temperature is in uniqueness, for both the ferromagnetic and antiferromagnetic cases.
The algorithm for the antiferromagnetic Potts model is based on iteratively adding the edges of the graph and resampling a bichromatic class that contains the endpoints of the newly added edge. Key to the algorithm is how to perform the resampling step efficiently since bichromatic classes can potentially induce linear-sized components. To this end, we exploit the tree uniqueness to show that the average growth of bichromatic components is typically small, which allows us to use correlation decay algorithms for the resampling step. While the precise uniqueness threshold on the tree is not known for general values of q and Delta in the antiferromagnetic case, our algorithm works throughout uniqueness regardless of its value.
In the case of the ferromagnetic Potts model, we are able to simplify the algorithm significantly by utilising the random-cluster representation of the model. In particular, we demonstrate that a percolation-type algorithm succeeds in sampling from the random-cluster model with parameters p,q on random Delta-regular graphs for all values of q >= 1 and p<p_c(q,Delta), where p_c(q,Delta) corresponds to a uniqueness threshold for the model on the Delta-regular tree. When restricted to integer values of q, this yields a simplified algorithm for the ferromagnetic Potts model on random Delta-regular graphs.

Antonio Blanca, Andreas Galanis, Leslie Ann Goldberg, Daniel Stefankovic, Eric Vigoda, and Kuan Yang. Sampling in Uniqueness from the Potts and Random-Cluster Models on Random Regular Graphs. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 116, pp. 33:1-33:15, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2018)

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@InProceedings{blanca_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.33, author = {Blanca, Antonio and Galanis, Andreas and Goldberg, Leslie Ann and Stefankovic, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric and Yang, Kuan}, title = {{Sampling in Uniqueness from the Potts and Random-Cluster Models on Random Regular Graphs}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2018)}, pages = {33:1--33:15}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-95977-085-9}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2018}, volume = {116}, editor = {Blais, Eric and Jansen, Klaus and D. P. Rolim, Jos\'{e} and Steurer, David}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.33}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-94371}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2018.33}, annote = {Keywords: sampling, Potts model, random regular graphs, phase transitions} }

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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 40, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2015)

We study the q-state ferromagnetic Potts model on the n-vertex complete graph known as the mean-field (Curie-Weiss) model. We analyze the Swendsen-Wang algorithm which is a Markov chain that utilizes the random cluster representation for the ferromagnetic Potts model to recolor large sets of vertices in one step and potentially overcomes obstacles that inhibit single-site Glauber dynamics. The case q=2 (the Swendsen-Wang algorithm for the ferromagnetic Ising model) undergoes a slow-down at the uniqueness/non-uniqueness critical temperature for the infinite Delta-regular tree (Long et al., 2014) but yet still has polynomial mixing time at all (inverse) temperatures beta>0 (Cooper et al., 2000). In contrast for q>=3 there are two critical temperatures 0<beta_u<beta_rc that are relevant, these two critical points relate to phase transitions in the infinite tree. We prove that the mixing time of the Swendsen-Wang algorithm for the ferromagnetic Potts model on the n-vertex complete graph satisfies: (i) O(log n) for beta<beta_u, (ii) O(n^(1/3)) for beta=beta_u, (iii) exp(n^(Omega(1))) for beta_u<beta<beta_rc, and (iv) O(log n) for beta>=beta_rc. These results complement refined results of Cuff et al. (2012) on the mixing time of the Glauber dynamics for the ferromagnetic Potts model. The most interesting aspect of our analysis is at the critical temperature beta=beta_u, which requires a delicate choice of a potential function to balance the conflating factors for the slow drift away from a fixed point (which is repulsive but not Jacobian repulsive): close to the fixed point the variance from the percolation step dominates and sufficiently far from the fixed point the dynamics of the size of the dominant color class takes over.

Andreas Galanis, Daniel Štefankovic, and Eric Vigoda. Swendsen-Wang Algorithm on the Mean-Field Potts Model. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2015). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 40, pp. 815-828, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2015)

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@InProceedings{galanis_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2015.815, author = {Galanis, Andreas and \v{S}tefankovic, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{Swendsen-Wang Algorithm on the Mean-Field Potts Model}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2015)}, pages = {815--828}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-939897-89-7}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2015}, volume = {40}, editor = {Garg, Naveen and Jansen, Klaus and Rao, Anup and Rolim, Jos\'{e} D. P.}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2015.815}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-53389}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2015.815}, annote = {Keywords: Ferromagnetic Potts model, Swendsen-Wang dynamics, mixing time, mean-field analysis, phase transition.} }

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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 28, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014)

Counting independent sets on bipartite graphs (#BIS) is considered a canonical counting problem of intermediate approximation complexity. It is conjectured that #BIS neither has an FPRAS nor is as hard as #SAT to approximate. We study #BIS in the general framework of two-state spin systems in bipartite graphs. Such a system is parameterized by three numbers (beta,gamma,lambda), where beta (respectively gamma) represents the weight of an edge (or "interaction strength") whose endpoints are of the same 0 (respectively 1) spin, and lambda is the weight of a 1 vertex, also known as an "external field". By convention, the edge weight with unequal 0/1 end points and the vertex weight with spin 0 are both normalized to 1. The partition function of the special case beta=1, gamma=0, and lambda=1 counts the number of independent sets. We define two notions, nearly-independent phase-correlated spins and symmetry breaking. We prove that it is #BIS-hard to approximate the partition function of any two-spin system on bipartite graphs supporting these two notions.
As a consequence, we show that #BIS on graphs of degree at most 6 is as hard to approximate as #BIS~without degree bound. The degree bound 6 is the best possible as Weitz presented an FPTAS to count independent sets on graphs of maximum degree 5. This result extends to the hard-core model and to other anti-ferromagnetic two-spin models. In particular, for all antiferromagnetic two-spin systems, namely those satisfying beta*gamma<1, we prove that when the infinite (Delta-1)-ary tree lies in the non-uniqueness region then it is #BIS-hard to approximate the partition function on bipartite graphs of maximum degree Delta, except for the case beta=gamma and lambda=1. The exceptional case is precisely the antiferromagnetic Ising model without an external field, and we show that it has an FPRAS on bipartite graphs. Our inapproximability results match the approximability results of Li et al., who presented an FPTAS for general graphs of maximum degree Delta when the parameters lie in the uniqueness region.

Jin-Yi Cai, Andreas Galanis, Leslie Ann Goldberg, Heng Guo, Mark Jerrum, Daniel Stefankovic, and Eric Vigoda. #BIS-Hardness for 2-Spin Systems on Bipartite Bounded Degree Graphs in the Tree Non-uniqueness Region. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 28, pp. 582-595, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2014)

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@InProceedings{cai_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.582, author = {Cai, Jin-Yi and Galanis, Andreas and Goldberg, Leslie Ann and Guo, Heng and Jerrum, Mark and Stefankovic, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric}, title = {{#BIS-Hardness for 2-Spin Systems on Bipartite Bounded Degree Graphs in the Tree Non-uniqueness Region}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014)}, pages = {582--595}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-939897-74-3}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2014}, volume = {28}, editor = {Jansen, Klaus and Rolim, Jos\'{e} and Devanur, Nikhil R. and Moore, Cristopher}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.582}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-47235}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.582}, annote = {Keywords: Spin systems, approximate counting, complexity, #BIS-hardness, phase transition} }

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**Published in:** LIPIcs, Volume 28, Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014)

Recent results establish for the hard-core model (and more generally for 2-spin antiferromagnetic systems) that the computational complexity of approximating the partition function on graphs of maximum degree D undergoes a phase transition that coincides with the uniqueness/non-uniqueness phase transition on the infinite D-regular tree. For the ferromagnetic Potts model we investigate whether analogous hardness results hold. Goldberg and Jerrum showed that approximating the partition function of the ferromagnetic Potts model is at least as hard as approximating the number of independent sets in bipartite graphs, so-called #BIS-hardness. We improve this hardness result by establishing it for bipartite graphs of maximum degree D. To this end, we first present a detailed picture for the phase diagram for the infinite D-regular tree, giving a refined picture of its first-order phase transition and establishing the critical temperature for the coexistence of the disordered and ordered phases. We then prove for all temperatures below this critical temperature (corresponding to the region where the ordered phase "dominates") that it is #BIS-hard to approximate the partition function on bipartite graphs of maximum degree D.
The #BIS-hardness result uses random bipartite regular graphs as a gadget in the reduction. The analysis of these random graphs relies on recent results establishing connections between the maxima of the expectation of their partition function, attractive fixpoints of the associated tree recursions, and induced matrix norms. In this paper we extend these connections to random regular graphs for all ferromagnetic models. Using these connections, we establish the Bethe prediction for every ferromagnetic spin system on random regular graphs, which says roughly that the expectation of the log of the partition function Z is the same as the log of the expectation of Z. As a further consequence of our results, we prove for the ferromagnetic Potts model that the Swendsen-Wang algorithm is torpidly mixing (i.e., exponentially slow convergence to its stationary distribution) on random D-regular graphs at the critical temperature for sufficiently large q.

Andreas Galanis, Daniel Stefankovic, Eric Vigoda, and Linji Yang. Ferromagnetic Potts Model: Refined #BIS-hardness and Related Results. In Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014). Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs), Volume 28, pp. 677-691, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2014)

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@InProceedings{galanis_et_al:LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.677, author = {Galanis, Andreas and Stefankovic, Daniel and Vigoda, Eric and Yang, Linji}, title = {{Ferromagnetic Potts Model: Refined #BIS-hardness and Related Results}}, booktitle = {Approximation, Randomization, and Combinatorial Optimization. Algorithms and Techniques (APPROX/RANDOM 2014)}, pages = {677--691}, series = {Leibniz International Proceedings in Informatics (LIPIcs)}, ISBN = {978-3-939897-74-3}, ISSN = {1868-8969}, year = {2014}, volume = {28}, editor = {Jansen, Klaus and Rolim, Jos\'{e} and Devanur, Nikhil R. and Moore, Cristopher}, publisher = {Schloss Dagstuhl -- Leibniz-Zentrum f{\"u}r Informatik}, address = {Dagstuhl, Germany}, URL = {https://drops.dagstuhl.de/entities/document/10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.677}, URN = {urn:nbn:de:0030-drops-47319}, doi = {10.4230/LIPIcs.APPROX-RANDOM.2014.677}, annote = {Keywords: Ferromagnetic Potts model, approximate counting, spin systems, phase transition, random regular graphs} }