On 26-28 September 2022, MEROS: Mutual Engagement in aRchaeOlogical heritage and Science: 1st online workshop dedicated to Interaction in the field of archaeological heritage and science was organized and held in Samarkand.
The topic of the workshop: Post-excavation Works and Laboratory Setting for Archaeological Remains
Organizers of the event:
The Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan
Nara National Research Institute for Cultural Properties
International Institute for Central Asian Studies
Ya. Gulyamov Archaeology Institute, city of Samarkand
The word meros translates from the Uzbek language as "heritage". It is by no means a coincidence that the chosen name is a symbol poetically describing the main purpose of the workshop, being the transfer of knowledge for the study of archaeological sites, historical and cultural heritage properties.
The workshop was attended by young scholars from the Ya. Gulyamov Archaeology Institute, who have learned and mastered the scientific methods of soil sampling, which Japanese experts have presented to them; the young researchers mastered methods of soil classification by color coding using state-of-the-art equipment, they have acquired skills in flotation analysis, learned to use the system of documentation and storage of organic materials. The theory, which encompassed the latest achievements and prospects of the modern-day scientific trends in "biomolecular archaeology", was interspersed not only with learning by doing, or practical application, but also with field trips to the famous archaeological site of Kafir Kala and the unique medieval archaeological complex of Suleiman Tepa in Urgut.
The presentation by the Japanese experts of samples of the various tools and equipment, serving to considerably facilitate research both in the field, and in the lab, was also extremely engaging and salient for the workshop participants.
The knowledge acquired by the young scholars was not only consolidated by practice, but also distributed as the wonderful pocket-sized handout brochures titled "Archaeology of the Environment in the course of the fieldwork", printed on water-stable paper, - a quality which will come in extremely handy in moist field work conditions.
This workshop is yet another important session in the series of capacity
building training events financed by The Agency for Cultural Affairs, Japan, aimed at enhancing the research competence in young archaeologists.