Robertson–Seymour Theorem

In graph theory, the Robertson–Seymour theorem (also called the graph minor theorem) states that the undirected graphs, partially ordered by the graph minor relationship, form a well-quasi-ordering. Equivalently, every family of graphs that is closed under minors can be defined by a finite set of forbidden minors, in the same way that Wagner's theorem characterizes the planar graphs as being the graphs that do not have the complete graph K5 and the complete bipartite graph K3,3 as minors.

The Robertson–Seymour theorem is named after mathematicians Neil Robertson and Paul D. Seymour, who proved it in a series of twenty papers spanning over 500 pages from 1983 to 2004. Before its proof, the statement of the theorem was known as Wagner's conjecture after the German mathematician Klaus Wagner, although Wagner said he never conjectured it.

A weaker result for trees is implied by Kruskal's tree theorem, which was conjectured in 1937 by Andrew Vázsonyi and proved in 1960 independently by Joseph Kruskal and S. Tarkowski.

Read more about Robertson–Seymour Theorem:  Statement, Forbidden Minor Characterizations, Examples of Minor-closed Families, Obstruction Sets, Polynomial Time Recognition, Fixed-parameter Tractability, Finite Form of The Graph Minor Theorem

Famous quotes containing the word theorem:

    To insure the adoration of a theorem for any length of time, faith is not enough, a police force is needed as well.
    Albert Camus (1913–1960)