Recall that the **left Kan extension** of a functor $F:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{M}$ along a functor $P:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{B}$ is defined to be a functor $F':\mathbf{B}\to \mathbf{M}$ equipped with a natural transformation $\eta:F\to F'P$,

which is universal in the following sense: for every functor $G:\mathbf{B}\to \mathbf{M}$ and every natural transformation $\beta: F\to G P$, there exists a unique natural transformation $\beta':F'\to G$ such that $(\beta'\circ P)\eta=\beta$,

We shall say that the natural transformation $\eta:F\to F'P$ **exibit** $F'$ as the left Kan extension of $F$ along $P$.

Recall that a left Kan extension $(F',\eta)$ is said to be **absolute** if it stays a left Kan extension after postcomposing it with any functor, that is, if the pair $(U F',U\circ \eta)$ is the left Kan extension of the functor $U F$ for any functor $U:\mathbf{M}\to \mathbf{N}$.

Dually, the **right Kan extension** of a functor $F:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{M}$ along a functor $P:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{B}$ is defined to be a functor $F':\mathbf{B}\to \mathbf{M}$ equipped with a natural transformation $\epsilon:F'\circ P \to F$

which is universal in the following sense: for every functor $G:\mathbf{B}\to \mathbf{M}$ and every natural transformation $\beta: G\circ P \to F$, there exists a unique natural transformation $\beta': G\to F'$ such that $\epsilon (\beta'\circ P)=\beta$,

We shall say that the natural transformation $\epsilon:F'\circ P \to F$ **exibit** $F'$ as the right Kan extension of $F$ along $P$.

Recall that a right Kan extension $(F',\epsilon)$ is said to be **absolute** if it stays a right Kan extension after postcomposing it with any functor, that is if the pair $(U F',U\circ \epsilon)$ is the right Kan extension of the functor $U F$ for any functor $U:\mathbf{M}\to \mathbf{N}$.

A pair $(F',\epsilon)$ is the right Kan extension of a functor $F:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{M}$ along a functor a functor $P:\mathbf{A}\to \mathbf{B}$ iff the pair $(F'^o,\epsilon^o)$ is the left Kan extension of the functor $F^o:\mathbf{A}^o\to \mathbf{M}^o$ along the functor $P^o:\mathbf{A}^o\to \mathbf{B}^o$.

Kan extensions can be taken in succession:

Suppose that we have a diagram of categories, functors and natural transformations,

If a natural transformation $\eta:F\to F'P$ exhibit the functor $F'$ as the left Kan extension of the functor $F$ along $P$, and a natural transformation $\eta':F'\to F''Q$ exhibit the functor $F''$ as the left Kan extension of the functor $F'$ along $Q$, then the natural transformation $(\eta'\circ P)\eta:F \to F''Q P$ exhibit the functor $F''$ as the left Kan extension of the functor $F$ along $Q P$

Revised on November 20, 2020 at 21:56:01
by
Dmitri Pavlov