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We define a Z/48-valued homotopy invariant nu of a G_2-structure on the tangent bundle of a closed 7-manifold in terms of the signature and Euler characteristic of a coboundary with a Spin(7)-structure. For manifolds of holonomy G_2 obtained by the twisted connected sum construction, the associated torsion-free G_2-structure always has nu = 24. Some holonomy G_2 examples constructed by Joyce by desingularising orbifolds have odd nu. We define a further homotopy invariant xi of G_2-structuresdoi:10.2140/gt.2015.19.2949 fatcat:7lmnb4q5urdzxk6t42nhskhtqe