Yavuz Selim Karakışla was born in İzmit in 1961. In 1979, he graduated from the Kadıköy Maârif Kolleji (later known as the Kadıköy Anadolu Lisesi). In 1987, he graduated from the History Department of Boğaziçi University. On 31 March 1992, he earned his Master of Arts degree in the field of Social History from the Institute of Social Sciences, at Boğaziçi University, with his thesis: "Exile Days of Sultan Abdülhamid II in Salonika (1909-1912) and Confiscation of His Wealth." He received his Ph.D. degree from the Department of History at the State University of New York / Binghamton, on 23 February 2003, with his doctoral dissertation, "Women and Work in the Ottoman Empire: Society for the Employment of Ottoman Muslim Women (1916-1923)," which also won him the "Best Doctoral Thesis" award for 2003, at the Prize Competition for Research on the History of Banking and Finance, organized by the Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre. He passed away on November 25, 2016.
His articles on the economic and social history of the Ottoman Empire have appeared in several scholarly publications and in various academic journals, such as, Turkish Studies Association Bulletin, Tarih ve Toplum, Toplumsal Tarih, Popüler Tarih, Toplum ve Bilim, Virgül, Simurg, Kebikeç, Müteferrika, NTV Tarih, Atlas Tarih, GEO, Aktüel, etc. His published books include: Women, Work and World War I in the Ottoman Empire: Society for the Employment of Ottoman Muslim Women (1916-1923) (İstanbul: Ottoman Bank Archives and Research Centre, 2005); Eski İstanbul'un Delileri: Pazarola Hasan Bey (1885-1926) (İstanbul: Tarih Vakfı, Toplumsal Tarih, 2006), (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, [2nd edition] 2014); Osmanlı Kadın Telefon Memureleri (1913-1923) (İstanbul: Türk Telekom Yayınları, 2008), (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, [2nd edition] 2014); Osmanlı Hanımları ve Kadın Terzileri (1869-1923) (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, 2014); Osmanlı Hanımları ve Hizmetçi Kadınlar (1869-1927) (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, 2014); Kitabiyat Yazıları (1844-2014) (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, 2014); Osmanlı Ordusunda Kadın Askerler: Birinci Kadın İşçi Taburu (1917-1919) (İstanbul: Akıl Fikir Yayınları, 2015); Exile Days of Sultan Abdülhamid II in Salonika (1909-1912) (İstanbul: Libra, 2015); and, Sultan II. Abdülhamid'in Selanik'teki Sürgünlük Günleri (1909-1912) (İstanbul: Libra, 2015).
He was married to Özden Dilek Karakışla (Galatasaray '82, Boğaziçi '89), and the proud father of Eylül Yağmur Karakışla ('99; ALKEV '13, St. J. '18).