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Random Walks in Restricted Domains and Standard Young Tableaux

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

The School of Mathematical Sciences of Queen Mary University of London invite applications for a PhD project commencing either in September 2019 for students seeking funding, or at any point in the academic year for self-funded students. The deadline for funded applications was 31 January 2019.

This project will be supervised by Prof Thomas Prellberg.

The aim of this project is to study the connections between Standard Young Tableaux (SYT) and Random Walks using enumerative and bijective methods. Combinatorial interpretations of SYT of bounded height have recently received much attention; a good survey of this active area in combinatorics is given in [1].

SYT of bounded height can both be represented using specific random walks in the positive orthant of Zd and a certain type of coloured Motzkin paths. This connection is understood well, and explicit bijections have been constructed [2].

In dimensions d=2 and d=3 there is a well-known connection with Dyck and Motzkin paths. Intriguingly, recent enumerative work [3] found that restricting the domain for the random walks is in some sense equivalent to considering lattice paths in a finite strip. This result is based on equinumeracy shown by comparing counting formulas, and no bijective proof is known. Also, the relevant restriction for SYT is not known.

There are two open problems to be worked on here. The first one is identifying the appropriate statistics for SYT and subsequently the provision of a bijective proof of the equinumeracy. The second one is to generalise these results to higher dimensions, and hence to SYT of arbitrary bounded height.

The application procedure is described on the School website. For further inquiries please contact Professor Thomas Prellberg at .

Funding Notes

This project can be also undertaken as a self-funded project, either through your own funds or through a body external to Queen Mary University of London. Self-funded applications are accepted year-round.

The School of Mathematical Sciences is committed to the equality of opportunities and to advancing women’s careers. As holders of a Bronze Athena SWAN award we offer family friendly benefits and support part-time study. Further information is available here. We strongly encourage applications from women as they are underrepresented within the School.

We particularly welcome applicants through the China Scholarship Council Scheme.


[1] Marni Mishna. On standard Young tableaux of bounded height. arXiv:1805.08130. To appear in Recent Trends in Algebraic Combinatorics.

[2] Sen-Peng Eu, Tung-Shan Fu, Justin T. Hou, and Te-Wei Hsu. Standard Young tableaux and colored Motzkin paths. J. Combin. Theory Ser. A, 120(7):1786-1803, 2013.

[3] Paul R. G. Mortimer and Thomas Prellberg. On the Number of Walks in a Triangular Domain. Electron. J. Combinat. 22:P1.64, 2015

Related Subjects

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FTE Category A staff submitted: 34.80

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