Director of the National Centre of Biography, Australian National University

Melanie Nolan is Professor of History, Director of the National Centre of Biography, and General Editor of the Australian Dictionary of Biography, ANU. She has an Australasian background having been born on the West Coast, New Zealand, attaining a M.A. (Hons.) from Canterbury University and a PhD from the ANU. She spent 16 years teaching at Victoria University of Wellington before joining the School of History at the ANU in 2008. She will be convenor of the Masters in Biographical Research and Writing from 2012 at the ANU. She is on the editorial boards of Labour History (Sydney) and Labour History Review (UK).

Melanie edited Suffrage and Beyond: International Feminist Perspectives (1994), Revolution: The 1913 Great Strike in New Zealand (2005), War and Class. The Diary of Jack McCullough (2009) and Unions In Common Cause: The New Zealand Federation of Labour, 1937-1988 (2011). She is the author of Breadwinning. New Zealand Women and the State (2000) and award-winning Kin. A Collective Biography of a New Zealand Working-class Family (2005). She is currently writing a history of egalitarianism and the Australia state, is editing a collection on the ADB’s history and vol. 18 of the ADB.


  • 2008–present
    Professor of History, School of History, Research School of Social Sciences, ANU


  • 1990 
    ANU, PhD

Research Areas

  • Historical Studies (2103)