There are two forms of Manifesto developer: site builders and module developers. Site builders need to write CSS to style the site, write HTML to customize templates, understand the Manifesto template hierarchy, and should be comfortable working around PHP (if not directly with it). Broader knowledge of PHP and the ability to write and work with MySQL and queries is a great asset. You'll need all of those skills to develop your custom modules for Manifesto.

Built on Foundation

Manifesto is built on the Foundation framework, and uses it heavily in every default template. The templates are moving towards framework-independent markup, however, so the HTML isn't needlessly cluttered with Foundation-specific class names. We have tried to develop the templates in such a way that the class names don't specifically mention layout-related size, e.g. "medium-6," instead allowing the developer to specify these attributes in CSS.


CSS is set up in SASS files in Manifesto by default, and expects you to contribute your custom CSS to a _site.scss file that is automatically concatenated and combined with the default Manifesto styles. Since the code that goes into <head> section of your site is fully-available to you for modification, you are always free to add your own CSS files to the page load.

First Steps

We're developing video tutorials to demonstrate common tasks like installing Manifesto, cloning the default theme, or modifying templates. Until then, head on over to the Developer Guide and check out the Getting Started section.

Open Source

Manifesto is an open-source project, but is current maintained in a Subversion repository (Hey, git wasn't invented when I got this started!).

As of January 2020, Version 3 is being prepared for release, with a new software update module, unified Fields module, improved semantic CSS, and a trove of pre-designed page templates!

If you're interested in getting involved in contributing to Manifesto - either core updates, or your own custom modules, get in touch!