She earned both her B.A. and M.Arch from Princeton University and has taught architectural design and history at Parsons The New School for Design, Pratt Institute, and Columbia University. She is currently Professor of Architecture at Yale University. Easterling is a contemporary writer working on the issues of urbanism, architecture, and organization in relation to the phenomena commonly defined as globalization.
Easterling’s latest book, Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space (Verso, 2014) analyzes infrastructure as the determinant of a set of hidden rules that "structure the spaces all around us." Enduring Innocence: Global Architecture and Its Political Masquerades (MIT, 2005), researches familiar spatial products that have landed in precarious political situations around the world. A previous book, Organization Space: Landscapes, Highways and Houses in America, applies network theory to a discussion of American infrastructure and development formats. Easterling is also the author (with archivist, writer, and filmmaker Rick Prelinger) of Call It Home: The House That Private Enterprise Built, a laserdisc on the history of suburbia and suburban planning. She has completed two research installations on the Web that explore alternative methods and documents for adjusting urban space: “Wildcards: A Game of Orgman” and “Highline: Plotting NYC.” Her work has been widely published in journals such as Grey Room, Volume, Cabinet, Assemblage, Log, Praxis, Harvard Design Magazine, Perspecta, Metalocus, and ANY. She has lectured widely in the United States as well as internationally and her work has been exhibited at venues such as the Queens Museum of Art, the Architectural League of New York, the Municipal Art Society, and the Wexner Center for the Arts.
In spring 2008 she was one of 100 designers chosen by prominent Swiss architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron to receive a commission for a villa project organized by the Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei in Ordos, Inner Mongolia, as part of cultural district being built by local tycoon Cai Jiang.
- Ed., with David Mohney. Seaside: Making a Town in America. New York, N.Y.: Princeton Architectural Press, 1991.
- American Town Plans: A Comparative Time Line. New York, N.Y.: Princeton Architectural Press, 1993.
- Organization Space: Landscapes, Highways, and Houses in America. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1999.
- Enduring Innocence: Global Architecture and its Political Masquerades. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2005. ISBN 0-262-55065-2
- The Action Is The Form. Victor Hugo's TED Talk. London: Strelka Press, 2012. ASIN B0085JSC44
- Extrastatecraft: The Power of Infrastructure Space. Verso, 2014. ISBN 978-1-78168-587-7
- "Verso Books".
- Bernstein, Fred (May 1, 2008). "In Inner Mongolia, Pushing Architecture's Outer Limits". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-09-16.
- Keller Easterling Architectural Projects