Impact of the format, arrangement and availability of electronic gaming machines outside casinos on gambling

Abstract

This study evaluates the influence of the format, arrangement and availability of Electronic Gaming Machines Outside Casinos (EGMOC) on gambling behaviour and perceptions. Two studies comprising occasional, at-risk and probable pathological gamblers were conducted. The first study used focus groups, while the second was conducted in a laboratory setting reproducing a bar. The results of the former study indicate that while format does not influence gambling behaviours, the arrangement of EGMOC in a gambling setting is a critical factor: in general, gamblers perceive isolated areas in a gambling venue as a factor contributing to impaired control. However, behavioural results obtained in the laboratory setting do not corroborate subjective data. Finally, gamblers suggested almost unanimously that the availability of EGMOC should be limited to a small number of sites. The results are discussed in the perspective of responsible gambling policies.

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