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A week is a long time in politics; the last fortnight has been an eternity for research policy

Lobby groups had barely had a chance to get their responses out to Sajid Javid’s spending round announcement—generally they said he talked a good game but delivered rather less—before Jo Johnson dropped his brotherly bombshell.

The younger Johnson’s short but devastating tweet on 5 September, announcing his resignation as science minister and from his own brother’s government, drowned out any other story. For a glorious moment, national news outlets decided the universities and science minister was the most important person in politics.

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