Ruth Bishop Fellowship

Murdoch Children’s Research Institute will establish a new five-year Fellowship, named in honour of Professor Ruth Bishop AC, for a mid-career female researcher to continue her legacy.

The Ruth Bishop Fellowship was made possible by funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The full-time fellowship will be awarded to a female researcher who specialises in vaccinology. An international search is currently underway.

The late Professor Bishop AC  was an eminent scientist and microbiologist who devoted her career to improving child health and was considered one of Australia’s infectious disease pioneers. Professor Bishop discovered rotavirus, the cause of a deadly form of severe gastroenteritis among children, in 1973, which led to the development of a vaccine by 2007. This life saving work helped to inspire the creation of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

MCRI’s Theme Director of Infection, Immunity & Global Health, Professor Andrew Steer, said that the new Fellowship would honour Professor Bishop’s legacy.

“Professor Bishop’s work was enormously important to global child health, and this Fellowship will support a fellow female researcher with a proven track record in vaccinology research to follow in her footsteps. Through the new Ruth Bishop Fellowship MCRI will continue to champion gender equity,” he said.

Director of Enterics, Diagnostics, Genomics & Epidemiology at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Gagandeep Kang, said, “Ruth Bishop was not just a pioneer, she was also an outstanding collaborator who supported rotavirus research in south-east Asia and globally.

“Her leadership and generosity provided the opportunities for many young scientists and medical researchers to grow, as will the fellowship named for her.”

Professor Steer said that the chosen Fellow would be financially supported and conduct their research at MCRI over five years. It will include laboratory and technical support, as well as professional development and team-building opportunities.

“MCRI will provide the chosen candidate with access to significant resources and partnerships – so they can go on to ultimately develop new tools and strategies in global health,” Professor Steer said.

“If you are a mid-career female researcher who is passionate about providing global access to vaccination and preventative treatments, this could be your unique opportunity to thrive in Parkville’s world-class health and medical research precinct in the heart of Melbourne. We encourage outstanding candidates from around the world to apply.”

MCRI is focused on improving the health and well-being of children living in disadvantage, no matter where they live. Read more about MCRI’s work in the Indo-Pacific Region, as well as new vaccine development and other current career opportunities for researchers.