To the general populace, the Institute appears to be nothing more than a private, independent “think-tank” devoted to developing alternative, non-polluting energy sources and other new technologies to benefit humanity. A public website proclaims the Institute’s mission as “Improving the Human Condition.”
The Hoffmann Institute was bankrolled by former German diplomat Thomas Hoffmann in 1917. Although the Institute doesn’t appear to make a profit, its modern sources of funding elicit much speculation. In fact, the UN and certain departments within the U.S. government may foot part of the bill for the Institute’s operations. Officially, since the Hoffmann Institute is not a government agency it has no legal authority whatsoever, and in cases where its members have run afoul of the law it relies exclusively on the law firm of Marshall, Wickham, and Vanderdossen to defend, advise, and lobby for them.
After Hoffmann’s death in the 1970s, Dr. Itohiro Nakami, Director of the Institute and Hoffmann’s former associate, used the Institute’s mandate of investigating alternative energy sources to conceal a secret agenda – saving humanity from what Institute insiders call the Dark Tide, the steadily rising level of dark matter in the galaxy. The presence of dark matter “feeds” certain fortean phenomena and entities. Since such entities have traditionally used their abilities to menace humanity, it follows that this period will pose the worse threat to human survival since the last ice age. Dr, Nakami believes that If humans aren’t ready, they won’t survive.