Responsible gambling: A synthesis of the empirical evidence

Abstract

Many jurisdictions around the world have implemented Responsible Gambling (RG) programs for the purpose of preventing gambling-related harms. Using a research synthesis strategy, this paper examines the extant peer-reviewed empirical evidence underpinning RG strategies. Instead of reporting all available studies and then discarding many on the ground of methodological flaws, we used the following a priori set of inclusion criteria: (1) All studies must have been conducted within real gambling environments with ‘real’ gamblers; and studies must have included at least one of the following elements: (2) a matched control or comparison group; (3) repeated measures; and (4) one or more measurement scales. The results revealed that only 29 articles met at least one of the methodological criteria. These empirical studies revealed five primary RG strategies. These findings have practical implications for evidence-based implementation of RG activities.

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