New research to reveal extent of problem gambling in Leeds
The five-month research project, led by Dr Alexandra Kenyon and Visiting Professor David Parsons in the University’s International Centre for Research in Events, Tourism and Hospitality (ICRETH), will examine the prevalence of problem gambling in Leeds, its impacts, and the potential for future change.
The issue of problem gambling has resulted in the introduction of new regulations in April 2016 to help protect children and adults from gambling-related harm. Within these regulations, gambling businesses are required to assess risk and identify measures for protecting individuals vulnerable to problem gambling.
Dr Kenyon explained: “With approximately two million people at risk from problem gambling in Britain, and around 300,000 directly affected, the need for in-depth research into the roots of problem gambling is clear.
“Whilst existing surveys provide useful information regarding individuals who are at greater risk of experiencing problems, there remains a lack of evidence regarding the determinants and outcomes of problem gambling.
“This study has been carefully designed to understand gambling motivations, behaviours and capture ‘life stories’ of the harm resulting from problem gambling. The research places face-to-face interviews with gambling businesses, support services and those seeking help with gambling addiction at the heart of the study in order to understand first-hand the issue of problem gambling.
“The Gambling Act 2005 and the new regulations identify the risks associated with gambling, so it is important that a baseline of problem gambling is established in order to assess the impact of changes such as the introduction of new gambling businesses. By examining the issue from a number of perspectives, the findings will help Leeds City Council assess the emerging changes in the occurrence and impact of problem gambling within Leeds, and also develop mitigation measures to reduce the effects of problem gambling.”
The research team, which includes Dr Heather Wardle, a national authority on problem gambling, and ICRETH Research Officer Dr Neil Ormerod, an experienced leisure evaluation researcher, will build on current ICRETH research into the night-time economy, investigating the benefits of national and local Pubwatch schemes.
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