Since the 19th c. Russian archaeologists have studied the legacy of classical civilization in a broad area from S. Russia to the Caucasus and Central Asia, and its interaction with local cultures. The work of the Dept. of Classical Archaeology of the Institute of Archaeology focusses on 10 important Classical sites in the former USSR and on the history of the Bosporan and Chersonesite states. A new trend is the complex investigation of ancient cities and their chora (esp. of areas under threat from agriculture, building and a general deterioration of the ecology). The Dept. of Classical Archaeology collaborates in this work with several foreign research centres and ensures a wide distribution of its results through works for the general reader and exhibitions.