Catherine Bishop is a Sydney-based historian who researches Australian, New Zealand and international history, with a particular focus on women. 


She has a postdoctoral fellowship at Macquarie University (2019-2022) for her project 'A History of Australian Businesswomen Since 1880', funded by an Australian Research Council Discovery Early Career Researcher Award. In 2019 she was also a Visiting Fellow at Northumbria University (March - June) in the UK.

She received a PhD from the Australian National University in 2012 and has published a number of articles. Her first book, Minding Her Own Business: Colonial Businesswomen in Sydney (NewSouth 2015), won the 2016 Ashurst Business Literature Prize. Her second book, Women Mean Business: Colonial Businesswomen in New Zealand has just been published by Otago University Press and was shortlisted for the 2019 New Zealand Heritage Book Award. Palgrave Macmillan will publish Female Entrepreneurs in the Long Nineteenth Century: A Global Perspective, a collection co-edited by Catherine and Jennifer Aston (Northumbria University), in March 2020.


Catherine was the Australian Religious History Fellow at the State Library of New South Wales in 2016, the recipient of a New Zealand History Trust Award in the same year and won the Australian Women's History Network Mary Bennett prize. She has also been a Kathleen Fitzpatrick Junior Research Fellow at the University of Sydney.

Catherine is a regular conference participant and also gives talks to local historical societies and community groups.


Her research interests include businesswomen in New Zealand and Australia, female missionaries, the International Federation of Business and Professional Women and the Daily Mail and Herald Tribune World Youth Forums of the post World War Two era. She is also interested in heritage, particularly in the way women's history has been memorialised. 

Women Mean Business:

 'the best sort of history - the kind that tells us history is not what we thought it was'

(North & South review,  2019)

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Women Mean Business
Current Projects