From Unofficial Stationeers Wiki
In the aftermath of the Earth Crisis, humanity’s focus on space diminished. Yet many felt that, without ambitions beyond our home planet, our species might falter.
Created in 2070CE by a newly revamped United Nations, the Offworld Development Agency was given a very specific goal - to guide and encourage human space exploration at a time the cosmos was fading from the public mind.
It inaugurated the Stationeer Program in 2095. Understanding that funding would be difficult to come by, the ODA conceived the program as a slow-burn, low-outlay space initiative. While some derided Stationeers as 'cut-price cosmic castaways', the success of the program is testament to the wisdom and pragmatism of ODA's vision.