Despite the many (r)evolutions in remote sensing technology over the past three decades, integration in archaeological practice and theory has sometimes been limited by reliance on practice and theory imported from other disciplines, without questioning or deep understanding. This collection of papers aims to contribute to the exploration of developing practice and theory in remote sensing archaeology for the 21st century. The scope of this volume is the use of remotely sensed data from either air- or spaceborne platforms for the benefit of archaeology and cultural heritage in general, with a specific focus on better defining the roles and contexts that detail why archaeologists may apply remote sensing techniques. With this focus, it is our hope that remotely sensed data will be better and more intrinsically integrated into the symbiosis of archaeological practice and theory. The editorial for this volume suggests that many aspects of archaeological practice can be characterised as ‘beg, borrow and steal’. This collection provides the reader with thoughtful papers that contribute to the development of archaeological remote sensing as a mature interdisciplinary field characterised by explicit and theoretically engaged approaches to understanding the past.