Vol. 6, No. 4, 2012

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ISSN: 1944-7833 (e-only)
ISSN: 1937-0652 (print)
Spherical varieties and integral representations of $L$-functions

Yiannis Sakellaridis

Vol. 6 (2012), No. 4, 611–667

We present a conceptual and uniform interpretation of the methods of integral representations of L-functions (period integrals, Rankin–Selberg integrals). This leads to (i) a way to classify such integrals, based on the classification of certain embeddings of spherical varieties (whenever the latter is available), (ii) a conjecture that would imply a vast generalization of the method, and (iii) an explanation of the phenomenon of “weight factors” in a relative trace formula. We also prove results of independent interest, such as the generalized Cartan decomposition for spherical varieties of split groups over p-adic fields (following an argument of Gaitsgory and Nadler).

automorphic $L$-functions, spherical varieties, Rankin–Selberg, periods of automorphic forms
Mathematical Subject Classification 2000
Primary: 11F67
Secondary: 22E55, 11F70
Received: 31 March 2010
Revised: 4 July 2011
Accepted: 1 August 2011
Published: 25 July 2012
Yiannis Sakellaridis
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Rutgers University
101 Warren Street
Smith Hall 216
Newark, NJ 07102
United States