CollectiveAccess - A CMS for Catalogues, Libraries, Museums and More

If there's one thing that's a sure thing in the world of CMS, it's that there is almost always a product for every individual need if you look hard enough. Today, I'm going to introduce you to a fairly new CMS to the market called CollectiveAccess.

Let's start with the basics, what is CollectiveAccess?

Well, it's a CMS that is best described (according to their website) as software for describing all manner of things, and allows you to create catalogues that closely conform to your needs without custom programming. In other words, It is free open-source software for managing and publishing museum and archival collections.

If that's still not descriptive enough for you, it's basically a CMS that you can use to build all kinds of different types of websites but specifically focused on websites to display things such as online catalogues, libraries, production and broadcast footage, special collections and more. To get an idea of the types of projects it has been used for, visit this link.


  • Runs on any modern web browser
  • Pre-configured with several library standards including Dublin Core, PBCore, VRA Core and more
  • Customizable through simple user interfaces — no complex programming required
  • Reporting tools easily generate finding aids and exports to PDF or spreadsheet-readable formats
  • Supports multilingual cataloging
  • Mapping tools allow you to georeference any asset
  • Integrated with Library of Congress subject headings, Getty vocabularies, GeoNames, and more
  • Plugins extend the software's core functionality to support timelines, visualizations, image licensing and more
  • Import frameworks allow for the batch migration and transformation of media and data
  • Free online documentation and support

This is, of course, just a subset of the features available. Check here for a full set of features.


Interested? Visit their website or check out a demo and play around with it a bit to see if it fits your needs.