Reverse mathematics, well-quasi-orders, and Noetherian spaces

Archive for Mathematical Logic 55 (3):431-459 (2016)
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Abstract

A quasi-order Q induces two natural quasi-orders on $${\mathcal{P}(Q)}$$, but if Q is a well-quasi-order, then these quasi-orders need not necessarily be well-quasi-orders. Nevertheless, Goubault-Larrecq (Proceedings of the 22nd Annual IEEE Symposium 4 on Logic in Computer Science (LICS’07), pp. 453–462, 2007) showed that moving from a well-quasi-order Q to the quasi-orders on $${\mathcal{P}(Q)}$$ preserves well-quasi-orderedness in a topological sense. Specifically, Goubault-Larrecq proved that the upper topologies of the induced quasi-orders on $${\mathcal{P}(Q)}$$ are Noetherian, which means that they contain no infinite strictly descending sequences of closed sets. We analyze various theorems of the form “if Q is a well-quasi-order then a certain topology on (a subset of) $${\mathcal{P}(Q)}$$ is Noetherian” in the style of reverse mathematics, proving that these theorems are equivalent to ACA 0 over RCA 0. To state these theorems in RCA 0 we introduce a new framework for dealing with second-countable topological spaces.

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