The first SIAL meeting took place in Mont-Rigi, Belgium in 1993. As a result of that meeting, a review was bought together that summarized the state of art in the field for the first time since the classical seminal review of Brooks (1950). The proceedings of that meeting were published as a special volume of Archiv für Hydrobiologie (Martens et al., 1994); apart from summarizing both theoretical concepts of evolution in ancient lakes and practical activities in these systems, it also initiated a wealth of renewed interest in ancient lake issues.