It was no surprise to see Rama Thirunamachandran, director of research at the Higher Education Funding Council for England, giving one of the opening speeches at the Research Administrators Group Network annual conference in York last week. He is clearly one of the darlings of the higher education conference circuit. But let's hope fame isn't going to his head. Arriving at York station for the conference on Wednesday night rumour has it that Dr Thirunamachandran jumped into a taxi to travel the eight yards to the conference hotel. Will he be asking for a bigger dressing room next?