Simplex transformations and the multiway cut problem

Niv Buchbinder, Roy Schwartz, Baruch Weizman

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


We consider Multiway Cut, a basic graph partitioning problem in which the goal is to find the minimum weight collection of edges disconnecting a given set of special vertices called terminals. Multiway Cut admits a well known simplex embedding relaxation, where rounding this embedding is equivalent to partitioning the simplex. Current best known solutions to the problem are comprised of a mix of several different ingredients, resulting in intricate algorithms. Moreover, the best of these algorithms is too complex to fully analyze analytically and its approximation factor was verified using a computer. We propose a new approach to simplex partitioning and the Multiway Cut problem based on general transformations of the simplex that allow dependencies between the different variables. Our approach admits much simpler algorithms, and in addition yields an approximation guarantee for the Multiway Cut problem that (roughly) matches the current best computer verified approximation factor.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication28th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms, SODA 2017
EditorsPhilip N. Klein
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781611974782
StatePublished - 2017
Event28th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms, SODA 2017 - Barcelona, Spain
Duration: 16 Jan 201719 Jan 2017

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms


Conference28th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms, SODA 2017


FundersFunder number
United States-Israel Binational Science Foundation2014414
Israel Science Foundation1585/15


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