About Triple P

Where it began

Professor Matt Sanders still remembers the hurt and embarrassment on a mother’s face after her 5-year-old son swung a toy plastic lawn mower at her during a consultation more than 30 years ago.

“The child was de?nitely on track for serious behaviour problems and you could see the major impact on the family,” says Professor Sanders. “The mother was depressed and the parents fought over how best to handle the child. It struck me how many parents were raising their kids in an information vacuum”.

It was after this and many other similar consultations, that Professor Sanders and colleagues from the Parent and Family Support Centre at the University of Queensland, Australia, began the development of an effective parenting program. After decades of rigorous research, Triple P was eventually given a name in 1992, and is now used in 20 countries worldwide.

Professor Matt Sanders

Matt Sanders is a Professor of Clinical Psychology and the founder of the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program. His home base is in Brisbane, Australia, where he is Director of the Parenting and Family Support Centre, University of Queensland.

Over four decades, Professor Sanders has built a highly-regarded international reputation for
conducting outstanding research and translating it into practical programs which address childhood
behaviour problems and promote stronger families.

Professor Sanders’ Triple P parenting system has now helped approximately six million children and
their families. It is used in 20 countries and has been translated into 17 languages. More than 55,000
practitioners have been trained it its delivery.

Professor Sanders is the author of more than 200 publications, including more than 170 peer-reviewed articles, and has written or co-written 12 books, including the popular Every Parent: A Positive Approach to Children’s Behaviour. His work has inspired three international TV series, including the UK’s high-rating Driving Mum and Dad Mad.

Professor Sanders has consulted and advised governments at senior policy levels in Australia, Canada, UK, Eire, Switzerland, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, Iran, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands.

He has been a consultant to the World Health Organisation and is Expert Consultant on Positive
Parenting to the Council of Europe. In 2006 he met and discussed policy with the British Prime
Minister, Tony Blair, shortly before the Home Office launched a national parenting initiative which
includes Triple P.

Career awards have included:

  • International Collaborative Prevention Research Award (from the Society for Prevention
    Research in the US)
  • President’s Award for Distinguished Contribution to Psychology (from the Australian
    Psychological Society)
  • Trailblazers Award (from the Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Therapy)
  • National Violence Prevention Award (from the Australian Heads of Government)
  • Queenslander of the Year
  • Distinguished Career Award (from the Australian Assoc. for Cognitive Behaviour Therapy)

Professor Sanders is also a compelling communicator who effectively shares his knowledge with the
community. He writes regular newspaper columns and is a sought-after family commentator on radio
and TV.

He is married with two adult children.