Roadmap and Releases

Roadmap – Key Development Initiatives


Arches for Science

The development of Arches for Science is due to be released during 2021. It will extend the Arches Platform to provide a comprehensive system to help conservation scientists secure, retrieve, visualize, compare, and share their data, and manage project tasks in the lab. Arches for Science will be implemented at the Getty Conservation Institute, where it will be known as DISCO (Data Integration for Conservation Science), and, of course, it will be freely available as part of the Arches Platform for institutions worldwide.


Arches/Esri Integration

Currently, the Arches development team is developing an add-in for Esri ArcGIS Pro that will allow Esri users to directly access, edit, and synchronize Arches data from their desktop GIS software.


Arches Workflows (included in Arches v5, released in January 2020)

As of v5.0, released in January 2020, Arches supports the ability to define workflows. In Arches, workflows are configurable, multi-step, orchestrated data entry tasks. Think of a workflow as a series of steps, with each step presenting a data entry form to a user. Developers can take advantage of workflows to create data editing sessions that mirror business processes. For example, you could create a workflow to manage the data entry process and enforce the business rules related to tracking the status and outcomes of heritage impact assessments (known in the United Kingdom as casework and consultations) and heritage designations. Other examples include recording the location of a sample taken from a heritage object or place, describing the purpose of the sample, and the instrument used to analyze the sample.

Each step in a workflow can implement custom logic, data validation rules, and custom user interface elements to streamline data entry tasks. Workflows can support creation of multiple resource model instances, a process that might otherwise require a user to navigate many data entry forms across multiple models.

Workflows may be especially useful if you need to ensure a specific order of operations for a data editing task, or if you want to present a particular data entry form based on a user’s selection in a previous step (e.g., if user enters “x” in field “y” in step 1, then skip step 2 and jump to step 3).


Roadmap – Planned Features and Development

In Progress – work is funded and planned
Real-time Arches/Esri Integration
  • Authentication between Arches and ArcGIS Pro;
  • Ability to configure Arches to deliver data as native Esri GeoServices. This allows Esri users to seamlessly incorporate Arches data into their geo-processing and cartographic workflows;
  • Create or update Arches feature geometries using Esri geospatial tools and save your edits directly back to Arches. Use the full suit of Esri tools to analyze and manipulate geometries and save your results directly to Arches;
  • Create or update Arches instances by selecting multiple geometries from your Esri catalog;
  • Manage attribute edits from ArcGIS Pro via the Add-in’s embedded browser. This will allow Esri users to create the sophisticated hierarchical attribute data supported by Arches directly from ArcGIS Pro;
  • Run Arches workflows from within ArcGIS Pro;
  • Use Arches search tools within ArcGIS Pro;
  • Synchronize data between Arches, ArcGIS Pro, and Arches Collector.

Arches v5.1 (June 2021)

Esri Add-in Module to be released separately following the release of Arches v5.1.

Arches Collector Improvements
  • Improve map navigation and geometry creation and editing tools;
  • Enhanced support for uploading images from Collector to Arches;
  • Support two-way synchronization of data edits between Collector and Arches;
  • Improvements to error and status messaging.
Arches v5.1 (June 2021)
Arches for Science v.1
  • IIIF Support: Adds a datatype and card component to access, display, and annotation images from externally hosted IIIF image servers;
  • Implement a service to pass an image uploaded to Arches to an IIIF server and automate the creation of a manifest for the image;
  • Extend file-list data type; add card component to manage multiple file tiles more easily
  • Add ability for developers to use file loaders that define how to process and display the contents of a digital file;
  • Implement card to support plotting of X/Y datasets, point clouds, and .pdb files;
  • Add services and templating system to allow developers to aggregate information from multiple resource instances into a single report;
  • Extend the current resource-instance datatype to support bi-directional relationships. This enhancement will automate the creation of a reciprocal relationship when an editor links one resource instance to another;
  • Update the related resources search filter and Force Directed Graph visualization to take advantage of bi-directional resource instance datatypes.

    Work to support the customized Arches for Science implementation at the Getty Conservation Institute (GCI) — i.e. DISCO
  • Develop workflows for key tasks required by GCI conservation scientists;
  • Develop a search component and templates for displaying DISCO data in search results;
  • Develop dashboards to summarize DISCO data;
  • Document the process for importing TMS (The Museum System) collections data into DISCO.
Arches (Summer 2021)


Roadmap – Community


We encourage the Arches community to join in development efforts to improve and advance Arches.  If you are able to help contribute to Arches development, please see our contributor guidelines on Github.

Highly desirable but work is not funded
Reference Data Manager (RDM) update
  • Improve RDM concept management Workflows
  • Improve Management of collections
  • Implement API for RDM
  • Improve Import/Export of Vocabularies
  • Performance enhancements
Date unknown



Arches 5

Arches v5.1.1 was released in March 2021. See v5.1.1 release notes.

Arches v5.1 was released in October 2020. See v5.1 release notes.

Arches v5.0 was released in January 2020. See v5.0 release notes.

Details of Arches v5.1 development (released in October 2020)


Custom Indexing
  • Allows a developer to define an Elasticsearch index that flattens Arches graphs for use with Kibana (see below).
Arches v5.1 (October 2020)
  • Integrates Kibana dashboards into Arches;
  • Implements dashboards as plugins (single dashboard, dashboard list).
Arches v5.1 (October 2020)
IIIF Image Support
  • Implement a datatype/widget/card component to support use of IIIF images;
  • Support annotation of IIIF images.
Arches v5.1 (October 2020)
Enhanced Permissions
  • Add support for instance-level permissions.
Arches v5.1 (October 2020)
Improved JSON-LD Import/Export Support
  • Improves graph matching for JSON-LD;
  • Enhances Arches data types to better support JSON-LD.
Arches v5.1 (October 2020)
Details of Arches v5 development (released in January 2020)
Technology Upgrades
  • Python 3.7
  • Django 2.3
  • Postgres 12.0/PostGIS 3.0
  • Elasticsearch 7.4
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Componentized Search Filters
  • Implements modular search filters; allows an Arches administrator to select which filters (e.g.: spatial, temporal, advanced, saved) to deploy
  • Allows developers to add custom search filters to Arches
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Task Manager
  • Adds a module to define and run tasks (such as data import/export) asynchronously, allowing long running jobs to complete outside a user session
  • Provides a way to implement custom functions or sophisticated data processing tasks without making a user wait for results
  • Provides a way to schedule recurring tasks
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
  • Adds the ability to alert a user when a long running task (such as data export) has completed
  • Integrated with the Task Manager
  • Implements a user interface in Arches where a user can review notifications
  • Supports emailing users as an alternate method of notification
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
  • Extends the Arches platform to allow developers to design multi-step data entry screens
  • Implements a “data entry wizard” user interface
  • Useful for supporting more sophisticated data entry tasks that may require conditional logic
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Additional Data Entry Card Components
  • Adds a Grouping Card, which allows an administrator to group several data entry forms into a single form
  • Implements an improved map widget and map card that presents data entry forms, base maps options, and overlays in a more user friendly manner
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Enhanced Map Services
  • Replaces tileserver with native vector tile support directly from Arches PostGIS database
  • Significant performance enhancement
  • Implements a GeoJSON endpoint in Arches API for enhanced interoperability with desktop GIS
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Export Search Results
  • Allows an Arches Model designer to select which nodes will be downloaded as part of exporting search results
  • Supports search results that include instances of multiple models
  • Supports .csv, shapefile, and JSON formats
  • Supports models with multiple geometry nodes
  • Automatically creates a shapefile for point, line, and polygon geometries if a model allows multiple geometries
  • Integrated with Task Manager and Notifications to support large data export requests
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Improved Data Import Speed
  • Implements a “-bulk” switch to data import that improves import speed by a factor of 5.
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Improved Error Handling
  • Enhances error logging and messaging to users
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)
Ontology Loader
  • Allows a developer to specify a specific set of ontologies to load for an Arches application
Arches v5.0 (January 2020)

Arches Collector

Arches Collector v0.2.1 was released in September 2019. See

Arches 4

Arches v4.4.3 was released in November 2019. See v4.4.3 release notes.

Arches v4.4.2 was released in June 2019. See v4.4.2 release notes.

Arches v4.4.1 was released in February 2019. See v4.4.1 release notes.

Arches v4.3 was released in August 2018. See v4.3 release notes.

Arches v4.2 was released in June 2018. See v4.2 release notes.

Arches v4.2 was released in June 2018. See v4.2 release notes.

Arches v4.1 was released in January 2018. See v4.1 release notes.

Arches v4.0 was released in October 2017. See v4.0.1 release notes.

Last updated: March 2021

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