Effects on gambling behaviour of developments in information technology: A grounded theoretical framework

Abstract

The rapid growth and acceptance of online gambling is concerning to academics and clinicians in the field of pathological gambling research. This study proposes a theoretical framework that outlines the effect of technological developments in information technology (IT) on gambling behaviour. The aim of the study is to produce theoretical propositions that can be investigated empirically in future research. Grounded Theory was employed to enable a theoretical framework to conceptualise online gambling behaviour and the utility of IT in gambling behaviour. In total, eight participants were interviewed via semi-structured interviews until theoretical saturation was achieved. The theoretical framework was contrasted against existing problem gambling research. Grounded Theory has indicated that developments in IT have been a catalyst for Elevated Gambling Involvement, in terms of both participation and pre-occupation, and that this phenomenon was produced via the following behavioural constructs: Increased Outcome Control, Reduced Discipline, Expediency and Consumer Value.

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