On the Complexity of Some Colorful Problems Parameterized by Treewidth

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Abstract

We study the complexity of several coloring problems on graphs, parameterized by the treewidth t of the graph:

(1) The list chromatic number χ l (G) of a graph G is defined to be the smallest positive integer r, such that for every assignment to the vertices v of G, of a list L v of colors, where each list has length at least r, there is a choice of one color from each vertex list L v yielding a proper coloring of G. We show that the problem of determining whether χ l (G) ≤ r, the List Chromatic Number problem, is solvable in linear time for every fixed treewidth bound t. The method by which this is shown is new and of general applicability.

(2) The List Coloring problem takes as input a graph G, together with an assignment to each vertex v of a set of colors C v . The problem is to determine whether it is possible to choose a color for vertex v from the set of permitted colors C v , for each vertex, so that the obtained coloring of G is proper. We show that this problem is W[1]-hard, parameterized by the treewidth of G. The closely related Precoloring Extension problem is also shown to be W[1]-hard, parameterized by treewidth.

(3) An equitable coloring of a graph G is a proper coloring of the vertices where the numbers of vertices having any two distinct colors differs by at most one. We show that the problem is hard for W[1], parameterized by (t,r). We also show that a list-based variation, List Equitable Coloring is W[1]-hard for trees, parameterized by the number of colors on the lists.