*Note: Zoom link will open at 3:45 p.m.*

Understanding how a group or a graph, viewed as a geometric object, can be faithfully embedded into certain Banach spaces is a fundamental topic with applications to geometric group theory and theoretical computer science.

In this joint work with Florent Baudier, Pavlos Motakis and Andras Zsak we observe that embeddings into random metrics can be fruitfully used to study the $L_1$-embeddability of lamplighter graphs or groups, and more generally lamplighter metric spaces. Once this connection has been established, several new upper bound estimates on the $L_1$-distortion of lamplighter metrics follow from known related estimates about stochastic embeddings into dominating tree-metrics. For instance, every lamplighter metric on a $n$-point metric space embeds bi-Lipschitzly into $L_1$ with distortion $O(\log n)$.

In particular, for every finite group $G$ the lamplighter group $H = \mathbb{Z}_2\wr G$ bi-Lipschitzly embeds into $L_1$ with distortion $O(\log\log|H|)$.

In the case where the ground space in the lamplighter construction is a graph with some topological restrictions, better distortion estimates can be achieved. Finally, we discuss how a coarse embedding into $L_1$ of the lamplighter group over the $d$-dimensional infinite lattice $\mathbb Z^d$ can be constructed from bi-Lipschitz embeddings of the lamplighter graphs over finite $d$-dimensional grids, and we include a remark on Lipschitz free spaces over finite metric spaces.