Semigroup actions on sets and the burnside ring
Applied Categorical Structures
7 - 28
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In this paper we discuss some enlargements of the category of sets with semigroup actions and equivariant functions. We show that these enlarged categories possess two idempotent endofunctors. In the case of groups these enlarged categories are equivalent to the usual category of group actions and equivariant functions, and these idempotent endofunctors reverse a given action. For a general semigroup we show that these enlarged categories admit homotopical category structures defined by using these endofunctors and show that up to homotopy these categories are equivalent to the usual category of sets with semigroup actions. We finally construct the Burnside ring of a monoid by using homotopical structure of these categories, so that when the monoid is a group this definition agrees with the usual definition, and we show that when the monoid is commutative, its Burnside ring is equivalent to the Burnside ring of its Gr¨othendieck group.