Publication Details

Randle, M., Miller, L., Dolnicar, S. & Ciarrochi, J. (2014). The science of attracting foster carers. Child and Family Social Work, 19 (1), 65-75.


Across the world the number of children needing a foster home is increasing; however, the number of individuals willing to foster a child is decreasing. It is therefore critical to gain insight into the barriers preventing people from fostering a child. Using data from a 2009 survey of 756 Australians, combinations of barriers are investigated by conducting a posteriori segmentation analysis within the market of potential foster carers. Four segments are identified and profiled to determined significant differences in terms of psychological and socio-demographic characteristics. Findings, including the fact that almost one-third of respondents indicated that they had not considered foster caring before because no one had ever asked them to, have practical implications. Improved marketing strategies tailored to the characteristics of each segment are required to harvest the full potential of individuals willing to foster a child and thus contribute to solving one of the most difficult social challenges facing developed nations.

Included in

Business Commons



Link to publisher version (DOI)