African Cultural Heritage, the Arts, and Media-Based Creative Industries at the MIT Media Lab-Harvard Symposium on E-Development

The MIT Media Laboratory, The Center for International Development at Harvard University and The Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School organized a two-day conference on e-Development: Enabling Communities to shape their future on 19 and 20 October 2000.

Real Video archives of the principal sessions are available on the conference site. On the evening of October 19, as session was held entitled The Rhythm of Development: Panel and Music, moderated by K. Anthony Appiah of Harvard University and including Isaac Hayes, Soul Healer (Eric Atimu Greenwood), Princess Asie Ocansey, and DJ Spooky (Paul Miller).

This event, in which a number of Ghanians and friends of Ghana participated, featured not only music, but a discussion of the role the Isaac Hayes Foundation has played in developing an ultra-modern teaching and learning center  (NekoTech) in the Ghanian Village of Ada, inspired by Princess Asie Ocansey, a local leader who made good in the United States. She recruited Isaac Hayes to support her village development efforts. Issac was given the title of King in the Royal Family of Noyami Mantse of the Kabiawe of Ada, where he is called Nene Katey Ocansey.

The Nene Katey Ocansey I Learning & Tech Center is continuing fundraising, currently seeking resources for hostel and transportation for its teachers and students.


Immediately following the close of the symposium on October 20, a meeting of visiting Ghanians, including those active in the development of the Internet in that country, Ghanian expatriates participating in the conference, and friends of Ghana held a meeting to set up a network to support e-development in Ghana.

Peter Knight, a longtime fan of Isaac Hayes,  participated in the conference.