Today we are meeting up with old friends and making new ones at our CAAL kick-off workshop in Samarkand. Hosted by IICAS and held at the University of Samarkand. We are discussing ArchesProject implementation and GIS and Remote Sensing methods as well as the impact of climate change in the region. We are exchanging views on the challenges and potential of digitisation and working in open access knowledge platforms. We are excited about the ‘totality of understanding complex landscapes’ (Tim Williams) and building strong interpersonal relationships which will enable the project to document, protect, and promote the wonderful archaeological heritage of these lands.