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One of the Cultural Heritage Agency’s tasks is to advise on the management and preservation of cultural heritage collections. We work with all partners – owners, the public, the authorities, politicians, heritage professionals and universities – to draw up frameworks for the creation and selection of collections, and for collection management.

Assessing museum collections

What is the value of a museum collection or object? Who decides this value and how? Assessing Museum Collections. Collection valuation in six steps is a practical guide for assigning different kinds of value to items and collections. This publication is aimed at anyone involved in the professional management of a collection.

Creating and disbanding collections

We advise and support museums on the purchasing, deaccessioning and management of government-owned heritage. The Agency and the museum sector have compiled guidelines for the selection and deaccessioning of museum objects.

When an object is deaccessioned, the museum must find another suitable home for it. A relocation database (Dutch only) has been designed to help them in this task.


The Cultural Heritage Agency loans items from the State art collection for permanent or temporary display in museums. The recommendations of a curator are often needed when making a selection from a large collection. Curators can provide museums with initial recommendations in the form of a quote.

Collection management

We administer SPECTRUM, a guide for museum staff on how to manage, document and update collections. The guide contains 21 internationally agreed procedures for the management and documentation of museum collections. SPECTRUM was launched in the UK in 1994.

SPECTRUM is an open and freely-available collections management standard. It was launched in 1994 after an extensive collaborative development project, and is now widely recognised nationally and internationally as the primary specification for collections management activity in museums.

SPECTRUM has been translated into Dutch. The Dutch version also incorporates legislation relevant to the Netherlands and Flanders. The Agency administers and provides access to the Dutch version, known as SPECTRUM-N.