Throughout the twelve years that have just passed, I have had the pleasure of supporting the transformations of our company in several respects, in particular with the creation and the progressive development of its website, about which I spoke at the instant. This has become, thanks to the constant dedication of Jean-Pierre Soléry, a central element of our communication, the major link that unites us all, even in difficult times. A real showcase for the SFE, it allows everyone to obtain original data on Egyptian sites - in particular thanks to the exceptional portfolio of photos that François Gourdon generously makes available to all - and offers the possibility of online access to all our publications, BSFE et RdE. Information on the major events - seminars, conferences, exhibitions - which punctuate the progress of our subject can also be found there in a more general way, as well as on the Facebook page that accompanies it. Thanks to him, we have joined the evolution of a contemporary world that we could no longer ignore.
This period was also that of a real modernization of our publications, without however betraying its spirit. The contracts which united us to the publishing house Peeters, whose weight - more than 30 euros per year - was heavily felt on the finances of the association, were renegotiated to our advantage. Our publisher now fully supports the printing and distribution of the Review of Egyptology, as well as its distribution to all of our members, in return for the exclusivity of its sale to institutional organizations. On this occasion, the layout of this publication was also revised, the color was systematically integrated and the cover redesigned according to more current criteria. However, we have kept complete independence on the content of the publication, for which the editorial secretariat, provided by Laetitia Gallet, remained entirely our responsibility. Our bulletin, entrusted to Khéops editions, has at the same time undergone a profound reorganization, to become a more attractive, more comprehensive journal, better reflecting the intellectual activity of our company and better responding to the expectations of a large part of our members. . However, its realization has sometimes been a source of tension in recent years, and I am now convinced that the SFE would have an interest in taking full control of this publication, because it has the technical means, both for financial questions and for the preservation of its intellectual independence. This decision will naturally fall to my successor.
Because, if our company was able in time to take the turn of a certain modernization, which was the pledge of its survival, we must not hide that its existence remains precarious in spite of everything, like our treasurer, Gérard Bizien - whom I thank for its unwavering help for twelve years now - has had the opportunity to remind you on several occasions during the presentation of our successive financial statements. Despite difficult economic conditions, we have managed to keep SFE's accounts in relative balance, but we have not, however, increased its revenues. The number of members who have remained faithful to us during this period has only diminished very little - contrary to what is currently happening in many learned associations comparable to ours - but the recruitment of new members, especially among students. and young researchers, remains a major challenge, which in many ways involves the future of our association. New means of communication will undoubtedly have to be imagined, and implemented in this perspective, in the years to come.
In conclusion, I would like to warmly thank all the members of the office who have taken on the responsibility of the SFE with me during this last mandate, and in particular Nathalie Favry and Laetitia Gallet, who have taken on the heavy, often thankless, load of ensuring the daily life of our society, and to manage the inevitable small tensions and annoyances which can also result from it. Thank you all, and may for a long time remain the positive spirit of the passion for Egypt that brings us together in our association.