A Comparative Review of Grandparent Care of Children in the U.S. and China

Denise Burnette, Juanjuan Sun, Fei Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


This study explores the phenomenon of grandparent caregiving in two different cultural contexts, the U. S. and China. We begin with an overview of the evolution of grandparent caregiving in the U. S., including the strengths and service needs of this population. We then provide background information on left-behind children and grandparents in rural China. With this group in mind, we review a range of evidence-based practices, programs, and policies that have been implemented to support grandparent caregiving in the U. S. Keeping in mind the similarities and differences between the two societies, we conclude with recommendations for adapting these interventions to the Chinese context. This comparative approach furthers our knowledge of how families in diverse contexts around the world are adapting to the challenges of grandparent caregiving and contributes to the building of a core evidence base for interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)43-57
Number of pages15
JournalAgeing International
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2013


  • Grandparent Caregiver
  • Intergenerational Relationships
  • Left-behind Children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)


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