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A long-standing saga centring on allegations of bullying at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics (MPA) in Garching, Germany, is coming to a head. The scientist at the centre of the allegations has for the first time spoken out to defend herself. And the institute — which is funded by the Max Planck Society, one of the world’s wealthiest and most prestigious research organizations — is stepping up its response. Next week, it plans to present the results of a survey that should reveal whether bullying is still going on following measures taken to address it.