We show that unless P=NP, there cannot be a polynomial-time algorithm that finds a point within Euclidean distance cn (for any constant c≥ 0) of a local minimizer of an n-variate quadratic function over a polytope. This result (even with c= 0) answers a question of Pardalos and Vavasis that appeared in 1992 on a list of seven open problems in complexity theory for numerical optimization. Our proof technique also implies that the problem of deciding whether a quadratic function has a local minimizer over an (unbounded) polyhedron, and that of deciding if a quartic polynomial has a local minimizer are NP-hard.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Computational complexity
- Local minimizers
- Polynomial optimization
- Quadratic programs