The study of permutation groups has always been closely associated with that of highly symmetric structures. The objects considered here are countably infinite, but have only finitely many different substructures of any given finite size. They are precisely those structures which are determined by first-order logical axioms together with the assumption of countability. This book concerns such structures, their substructures and their automorphism groups. A wide range of techniques are used: group theory, combinatorics, Baire category and measure among them. The book arose from lectures given at a research symposium and retains their informal style, whilst including as well many recent results from a variety of sources. It concludes with exercises and unsolved research problems.
Peter Cameron has taught mathematics at Oxford University and Queen Mary, University of London, with shorter spells at other institutions. He has received the Junior Whitehead Prize of the London Mathematical Society, and the Euler Medal of the Institute of Combinatorics and its Applications, and is
currently chair of the British Combinatorial Committee.