Dr. ir. Rachel Keeton (1984, USA) is an architect and urbanist focused on the intersection of urbanisation and social equity in Africa. She is the author of Rising in the East: Contemporary New Towns in Asia (Sun, 2011) and co-editor of To Build a City in Africa: a History and a Manual (nai010, 2019). Following studies in the USA and UK, Keeton completed her MSc in Architecture at TU Delft in 2008. She worked as an urban researcher at the International New Town Institute from 2009-2015, developing a long-term academic exchange with Kenyan universities and conducting research on contemporary New Towns in the Middle East and Asia.
In 2015 she founded Urban Anecdote, a consultancy and research office. From 2016-2020 she was a recipient of the Delft Global Initiative Fellowship. Keeton completed her PhD in technical design at TU Delft in 2020, which examined the most prevalent spatial challenges in contemporary African New Towns, and developed a set of adaptive planning and design principles for future New Towns. During her PhD, Keeton completed fieldwork and led participatory planning workshops in Angola, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, and Tanzania.
Since 2021, Keeton is a postdoc researcher at the University of Twente. Her work on the HABITABLE project builds on her knowledge of contemporary urbanisation processes in Africa.