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The Mackey analogy in representation theory

Nigel Higson
Penn State University

Thursday, May 24, 2007
007 Kemeny Hall, 4 pm
Tea 3:30 pm, 300 Kemeny Hall

Abstract: Through his fundamental work on induced representations, George Mackey (1916-2006) was a key contributor to the theory of infinite-dimensional unitary representations of groups. The Mackey analogy is a proposal, due to Mackey, that there ought to be a certain similarity between the unitary representations of Lie groups and the unitary representations of "contractions" of these groups. I shall try to explain this in my talk, and then explain how C*-algebra theory and K-theory prompts us to take a new look at Mackey's proposal.

This talk will be accessible to graduate students.