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I discuss results bearing on a variational problem of a new type, inspired by fractional quantum Hall physics. In the latter context, the main result reviewed herein can be spelled as “the phase of independent quasi-holes generated from Laughlin’s wave-function is stable against external potentials and weak long-range interactions”. The main ingredient of the proof is a connection between fractional quantum Hall wave-functions and statistical mechanics problems that generalize the two-dimensional one-component plasma (jellium model). Universal bounds on the density of such systems, coined “Incompressibility estimates” are obtained via the construction of screening regions for any configuration of points with positive electric charges. The latter regions are patches of constant, negative electric charge density, whose shape is optimized for the total system (points plus patch) not to generate any electric potential in its exterior.