Research Interests: Dr. Sanjyot Mehendale is an archaeologist specializing in trade and cultural exchange of the early Common Era. She completed a dissertation on the Begram (Afghanistan) objects, which included a reexamination of, and ultimately new interpretations about, the nature of the finds, as well as a complete catalogue of the extensive ivory and bone objects discovered at the site. After completion of her dissertation, she began teaching on the Silk Roads as a Lecturer in UCB's Department of Near Eastern Studies. In 1999, she developed and became the co-director of a joint project with the Uzbek Institute of Archaeology in Samarkand to excavate sites in southern Sogdiana. In 2007, she was hired as a consultant by National Geographic Society to help structure the Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures from the National Museum, Kabul exhibition as well as to contribute to the accompanying catalogue. She has conducted archaeological research in Sri Lanka, off and on since 1996 and is currently working on the excavation of a shipwreck off the southern coast of the island carrying merchandise from the ancient Near East.