# Coherent topology

In topology, a **coherent topology** is a topology that is uniquely determined by a family of subspaces. Loosely speaking, a topological space is coherent with a family of subspaces if it is a *topological union* of those subspaces. It is also sometimes called the **weak topology** generated by the family of subspaces, a notion which is quite different from the notion of a weak topology generated by a set of maps.^{[1]}

## Definition

Let *X* be a topological space and let *C* = {*C*_{α} : α ∈ *A*} be a family of subspaces of *X* (typically *C* will be a cover of *X*). Then *X* is said to be **coherent with C** (or

**determined by**)

*C*^{[2]}if

*X*has the final topology coinduced by the inclusion maps

By definition, this is the finest topology on (the underlying set of) *X* for which the inclusion maps are continuous.

Equivalently, *X* is coherent with *C* if either of the following two equivalent conditions holds:

- A subset
*U*is open in*X*if and only if*U*∩*C*_{α}is open in*C*_{α}for each α ∈*A*. - A subset
*U*is closed in*X*if and only if*U*∩*C*_{α}is closed in*C*_{α}for each α ∈*A*.

Given a topological space *X* and any family of subspaces *C* there is unique topology on (the underlying set of) *X* which is coherent with *C*. This topology will, in general, be finer than the given topology on *X*.

## Examples

- A topological space
*X*is coherent with every open cover of*X*. - A topological space
*X*is coherent with every locally finite closed cover of*X*. - A discrete space is coherent with every family of subspaces (including the empty family).
- A topological space
*X*is coherent with a partition of*X*if and only*X*is homeomorphic to the disjoint union of the elements of the partition. - Finitely generated spaces are those determined by the family of all finite subspaces.
- Compactly generated spaces are those determined by the family of all compact subspaces.
- A CW complex
*X*is coherent with its family of*n*-skeletons*X*_{n}.

## Topological union

Let be a family of (not necessarily disjoint) topological spaces such that the induced topologies agree on each intersection *X*_{α} ∩ *X*_{β}.
Assume further that *X*_{α} ∩ *X*_{β} is closed in *X*_{α} for each α,β. Then the **topological union**
*X* is the set-theoretic union

endowed with the final topology coinduced by the inclusion maps . The inclusion maps will then be topological embeddings and *X* will be coherent with the subspaces {*X*_{α}}.

Conversely, if *X* is coherent with a family of subspaces {*C*_{α}} that cover *X*, then *X* is homeomorphic to the topological union of the family {*C*_{α}}.

One can form the topological union of an arbitrary family of topological spaces as above, but if the topologies do not agree on the intersections then the inclusions will not necessarily be embeddings.

One can also describe the topological union by means of the disjoint union. Specifically, if *X* is a topological union of the family {*X*_{α}}, then *X* is homeomorphic to the quotient of the disjoint union of the family {*X*_{α}} by the equivalence relation

for all α, β in *A*. That is,

If the spaces {*X*_{α}} are all disjoint then the topological union is just the disjoint union.

Assume now that the set A is directed, in a way compatible with inclusion: whenever
. Then there is a unique map from to *X*, which is in fact a homeomorphism. Here is the direct (inductive) limit (colimit)
of {*X*_{α}} in the category **Top**.

## Properties

Let *X* be coherent with a family of subspaces {*C*_{α}}. A map *f* : *X* → *Y* is continuous if and only if the restrictions

are continuous for each α ∈ *A*. This universal property characterizes coherent topologies in the sense that a space *X* is coherent with *C* if and only if this property holds for all spaces *Y* and all functions *f* : *X* → *Y*.

Let *X* be determined by a cover *C* = {*C*_{α}}. Then

- If
*C*is a refinement of a cover*D*, then*X*is determined by*D*. - If
*D*is a refinement of*C*and each*C*_{α}is determined by the family of all*D*_{β}contained in*C*_{α}then*X*is determined by*D*.

Let *X* be determined by {*C*_{α}} and let *Y* be an open or closed subspace of *X*. Then *Y* is determined by {*Y* ∩ *C*_{α}}.

Let *X* be determined by {*C*_{α}} and let *f* : *X* → *Y* be a quotient map. Then *Y* is determined by {f(*C*_{α})}.

Let *f* : *X* → *Y* be a surjective map and suppose *Y* is determined by {*D*_{α} : α ∈ *A*}. For each α ∈ *A* let

be the restriction of *f* to *f*^{−1}(*D*_{α}). Then

- If
*f*is continuous and each*f*_{α}is a quotient map, then*f*is a quotient map. *f*is a closed map (resp. open map) if and only if each*f*_{α}is closed (resp. open).

## Notes

- ↑ Willard, p. 69
- ↑
*X*is also said to have the**weak topology**generated by*C*. This is a potentially confusing name since the adjectives*weak*and*strong*are used with opposite meanings by different authors. In modern usage the term*weak topology*is synonymous with initial topology and*strong topology*is synonymous with final topology. It is the final topology that is being discussed here.

## References

- {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation

|CitationClass=encyclopaedia }}

- {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation

|CitationClass=book }}