A new combinatorial interpretation of a q-analogue of the Lah numbers

Jim Lindsay, Toufik Mansour, Mark Shattuck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Lah numbers L(n,k) are the connection constants between therising factorial and falling factorial polynomial bases and countpartitions of n distinct objects into k blocks, where objectswithin a block are ordered (termed Laguerreconfigurations).In this paper, we consider the q-Lah numbersdefined as the connection constants between the comparable basesof polynomials obtained by replacing each positive integer n withnq=1+q+⋯+qn−1 and provide a new combinatorial interpretationfor these numbers by describing a statistic on Laguerre configurations forwhich they are the generating function. We describe someother algebraic properties of these numbers and can provide combinatorialexplanations in several instances using our interpretation.A further generalization involving a second parameter may also be given.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-264
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Combinatorics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2011


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