|Description:||Any clandestine organization devoted to the illegal training of individuals in the use of psionic talents. Active Imperial campaigns to eradicate the institutes have been pursued for over 200 years.|
Organizations of this nature have existed since before the advent of space travel, but they attained prominence only during the Long Night, when reproducible scientific discoveries made psionics a teachable, learnable science.
In the Imperial antebellum period, psionics institutes were rare, and they were formed only on a few scattered worlds which, for one reason or another, had an unusually high rate of psionic talents appearing, or which encouraged psionics for social, political, or commercial reasons. In the years after the Civil War, institutes were organized on most high population worlds within the Imperium.
Psionics institute is a generic name; each such institution was independently organized and maintained. Institutes were generally supported by that portion of the population which had psionic talents; since that portion was small, they were viable only on high population worlds (approximately one billion or more).
During the psionics suppressions, the institutes' charters were revoked, and talented individuals were persecuted. In some cases, the individuals fled to assume new identities on other worlds; in others, whole families emigrated to the Zhodani Consulate or to other places beyond the frontiers of the Imperium.
Following the psionics suppressions, there were theoretically no psionics institutes remaining. In practice, however, illegal underground institutes are rumored to still remain on many worlds.