What exactly is an entity?

An entity could be:

an organisation:
Cardiff University School of Medicine
a part of a larger organisation:
Institute of Infection & Immunity Research Office
a group of other entities:

Research institutes

Administrative & support offices

a collection of people:
Web editors School IT liaison officers

Entities exist in a hierarchy, which might look like:

  • Cardiff University
    • Cardiff University School of Medicine
      • Institutes
        • Institute of Infection & Immunity
        • Institute of Cancer Genetics
        • Institute of Medical Education
          • Admissions
          • Assessments
      • Administrative offices
        • Finance
        • Personnel

Managing entities

Let’s start by getting to work on an entity.

The Entities change list

In the Arkestra admin site, find Contacts & people > Entities. They are arranged in a tree reflecting the hierarchy of entities.

map to buried treasure

The Entities change list

You can:

  • search the list of Entities
  • filter the list according to various criteria
  • expand and collapse sections of the hiearchy using the controls in the window
  • move entites by dragging them around within the tree

Either select an existing entity to edit, or create a new one if none exist.

Editing an entity

map to buried treasure

The Entity change view - you’ll find many of the same controls and features throughout Arkestra’s adminstration interface.

This is where we tell Arkestra what it needs to know about our entity.

Basic information

its official title, in full
Short name for menus
a shorter version, if required
an image (for example a logo)
Home page
The entity will likely have a number of pages associated with it in the Pages system that; select the root page of that section. Arkestra will know that all the pages in that section belong to this entity.
The entity’s parent in the hierarchy. You can also change this by dragging the entity around in the change list, but if the hierarchy contains hundreds of items, this is a more efficient way to do it.
Include parent entity’s name in address
Arkestra builds an entity’s address automatically, and will include its parent’s name in that automatically. Usually that makes sense (IT Office, School of Medicine, but sometimes it might look silly (Cardiff University School of Medicine, Cardiff University), so this allows us to turn it off.
Some entities are actual organisational entities, like the University or the Research Office. Others are just useful groupings, or abstract entities.


This is there to show you how Arkestra will render the entity’s address
where the entity is based
Building recapitulates entity name
Sometimes, the building name and the entity name are so similar it would be silly to have them both in the address. If so, this field allows Arkestra to know that it shouldn’t include them both in addresses
Precise location
the place inside the building - floor, room number, etc
Precise location
any note for potential visitors


Email address
if the entity has its own email address
Phone contacts
choose or add a suitable label; don’t try to format numbers

Contacts & people, News & Events, Vacancies & Studentships

Arkestra will publish pages of various types automatically if required. The controls are very similar for them all, and also for other modules that might be added by other applications, and will look much like:

Publish a contacts and people page for this entity automatically
if this entity should have its own contacts and people page
what the page should be called