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Critical Gambling Studies
Number of Followers: 0  

  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
ISSN (Online) 2563-190X
Published by U of Alberta Homepage  [24 journals]
  • Editorial: Early Career Research in the Gambling Field: A Reflection on
           Existing Challenges and Opportunities for Change

    • Authors: Eva Monson, Jennifer Reynolds
      Abstract: -
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • A Critical Analysis of Interventions for Women Harmed by Others’
           Gambling

    • Authors: Katie Palmer du Preez, Jason Landon, Laura Maunchline, Rebecca Thurlow
      Pages: 1 - 12
      Abstract: At present, gambling studies literature has multiple understandings of family and others affected (FAOs) by gambling harm and their support needs in play, each with different possibilities and constraints for harm reduction engagement with women. Individual psychological approaches have been privileged, eschewing the social and relational situation of gambling and harm in women’s lives. In Australasia, the majority of those seeking support in relation to a significant others’ gambling are women. Gender has been posited as a shaping force in the social stratification system, distribution of resources, and gambling and harm within society. There has been minimal engagement with the lived experiences of FAOs, which limits gambling harm reduction service development and planning. This research critically engaged with gambling harm reduction studies for FAOs, alongside interviews with eight women FAOs who presented to community services from a social constructionist perspective. The aim was to provide insight into how women FAOs position themselves and their support needs in relation to gambling harm and recovery. Data was analysed using thematic analysis informed by feminist poststructuralist theories of language. Results suggested that this small group of women were subject to intersecting patriarchal constraints and economic determinants of gambling harm. Powerful normative and moral constructions of ‘good/bad’ mothers operated to individualise some women’s responsibility for addressing harm in families and to alienate these women from gambling support services. These findings suggest that gambling services must support women and families in ways that go beyond personal functioning, extending into the social and political conditions of possibility for harm and recovery. Critical psychology and coherent gender analysis may offer opportunities to expand the role of gambling support to include advocacy, community development, and more client-led and gender-aware practice with women affected by gambling harm.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • The Musings of ‘Evil Bastards’: Perspectives from Social
           Casino Game Professionals

    • Authors: Jennifer Reynolds
      Pages: 13 - 20
      Abstract: Technology has blurred the lines between gambling and gaming. While the convergence can be witnessed on many different levels, social casino games on social networking sites and mobile apps illustrate just one example. Much of what we currently know about social casino games focuses on player behaviour, with little understanding about this genre from the perspective of social game professionals. This paper aims to fill the gap in our understanding of social casino games through interviews with the professionals who design them. In-depth interviews were conducted with 14 professionals from the social casino games industry. Interviews were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings illustrate tensions that exist between the two fields of gambling and gaming; however, both are trying to separate themselves from the stigmatized ‘dirty secret’ that is gambling. Further, as a result of social casino games residing, for the most part, in an unregulated ‘grey area,’ findings illustrate the ethical struggle felt by social casino game professionals. This convergence has significant consequences, not only for players, but for game developers, designers, and researchers, and highlights the importance of game designer education.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Patterns of Disciplinary Involvement and Academic Collaboration in
           Gambling Research: A Co-Citation Analysis

    • Authors: Murat Akcayir, Fiona Nicoll, David G. Baxter
      Pages: 21 - 28
      Abstract: The purpose of this study was to investigate the current academic research foci in peer-reviewed studies on gambling. The researchers used co-citation analysis as a bibliometrics method. All the gambling-related publications indexed in Scopus and Web of Science were identified, and their citation patterns were analyzed. Our dataset includes a total of 2418 peer-reviewed gambling studies published over the five-year period from 2014–2018. The VOSviewer tool was used to visualize bibliometric networks and reveal key clusters among the studies. The findings indicate that gambling researchers mostly cited authors from the disciplines of neuroscience, psychology, health science, and psychiatry. Only 2% of the cited authors were from other disciplines, such as those in the social sciences and humanities. The most frequently cited sources also reveal the same pattern: that gambling researchers mostly cited articles published in neuroscience, psychology, and health science journals. The publications reviewed deal mainly with the pathological and treatment aspects of gambling. We also discovered some unique patterns of citation and collaboration, focusing on topics such as videogames, social network games, family, business, and tourism.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • General and Gambling-Specific Types of Control: Extending Mental Health
           Theory and Concepts to Problem Gambling

    • Authors: Sasha Stark
      Pages: 29 - 38
      Abstract: Rationale: A key factor in our understanding of problem gambling is control: over gambling outcomes (illusion of control) and behaviours (gambling self-efficacy). Research in the gambling field rarely looks beyond these gambling-specific types of control to more general types when identifying predictors of gambling problems. This work begins to integrate control concepts from the mental health and problem gambling fields by examining the importance of a more general type of control from the Stress Process Model: sense of control over life events. Methods: Closed-ended questionnaire and open-ended interview responses from 30 frequent (weekly or more) gamblers were used to examine whether general and gambling-specific types of control are linked as predicted in a conceptual model of control. Results: For some people, beliefs about one type of control are extended to inform beliefs about another type of control. In many cases, understandings of outcomes in life inform beliefs about controlling gambling outcomes and behaviours. Conclusions: Different types of control work together, and general understandings can translate into gambling-specific beliefs. Future work is needed to confirm and specify these relationships and clarify their importance to understanding the development of gambling problems.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Health Promotion Strategies to Address Gambling-Related Harm in Indigenous
           Communities: A Review of Reviews

    • Authors: Megan Whitty, Helen Breen, Marisa Paterson, Kate Sollis
      Pages: 39 - 54
      Abstract: The evolution of commercial gambling and its expansion into digital arenas has increased opportunities for people all over the world—including Indigenous people—to gamble. While there is considerable evidence for the suitability of a health promotion approach to improving the health and well-being of Indigenous communities worldwide, the evidence-base does not extend to the field of gambling research. A systematic review of reviews was conducted to identify relevant reviews in crossover areas of interest: interventions to address gambling-related harm in Indigenous populations and/or health promotion interventions on related health or behavioural outcomes. The quality of reviews was critically assessed—13 fit the inclusion criteria. Principal themes were characterised as being either related to ‘cultural,’ ‘structural,’ or ‘methodological’ factors. Findings indicate that an appropriate model of health promotion to address Indigenous gambling would necessarily involve careful consideration of all three elements. Applying a health promotion approach to the context of Indigenous gambling harms is increasingly relevant considering recent conceptual shifts in key areas, but there is currently limited evidence to guide the implementation and evaluation of such strategies. This review highlights what published evidence is available to strengthen future research in this area.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • The Relationship Between Unexpected Outcomes and Lottery Gambling Rates in
           a Large Canadian Metropolitan Area

    • Authors: Hin-Ngai Fu, Eva Monson, Ross Otto
      Pages: 55 - 67
      Abstract: The purchase of lottery tickets is widespread in Canada, yet little research has directly examined when and why individuals engage in lottery gambling. By leveraging a large urban dataset of lottery sales in Toronto, Canada, and using a simple computational framework popular in psychology, we examined whether city residents gamble more when local outcomes are better than expected; for example, wins by local sports teams or amounts of sunshine based on recent weather history. We found that unexpectedly sunny days predict increased rates of fixed-prize lottery gambling. The number of local sports team wins also predicted increased purchase rates of fixed-prize lottery, but unexpected positive outcomes in sports did not. Our results extend previous findings examining the linkage between sunshine and gambling in metropolitan areas beyond the US, but do not fully replicate the previously observed relationships between unexpected sports outcomes and gambling in US cities. These results suggest that the observed malleability of lottery gambling in response to incidental events in the gambler’s environment may vary considerably across geographies.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Gender Equality in Gambling Student Funding: A Brief Report

    • Authors: Carrie Leonard, Victoria Violo
      Pages: 68 - 75
      Abstract: Acknowledgement of gender disparity in academia has been made in recent years, as have efforts to reduce this inequality. These efforts will be undermined if insufficient numbers of women qualify and are competitive for academic careers. The gender ratio at each graduate degree level has been examined in some studies, with findings suggesting that women’s representation has increased, and in some recent cases, achieved equality. These findings are promising as they could indicate that more women will soon qualify for early-career academic positions. Most of these studies, however, examine a specific—or narrow subset—of academic disciplines. Therefore, it remains unclear if these findings generalize across disciplines. Gambling researchers, and the graduate students they supervise, are a uniquely heterogeneous group representing multiple academic disciplines including health sciences, math, law, psychology, and sociology, among many more. Thus, gambling student researchers are a group who can be examined for gender equality at postgraduate levels, while reducing the impact of discipline specificity evident in previous investigations. The current study examined graduate-level scholarships from one Canadian funding agency (Alberta Gambling Research Institute), awarded from 2009 through 2019, for gender parity independent of academic discipline.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Rationalization as a Dissonance Management Strategy among Electronic
           Gambling Machine Players

    • Authors: Tara Hahmann, Eva Monson
      Pages: 76 - 86
      Abstract: Erroneous gambling-related beliefs are well researched in light of their association with problem gambling, with some research suggesting these beliefs also serve as justifications for gambling behaviour. The process of justification (i.e., rationalization) can provide insights into how those who gamble resolve dissonance resulting from persistent loss in the gambling context. Using in-depth interviews of 43 participants who identified electronic gambling machines as their preferred game type and were either experiencing gambling problems or were at risk of developing a problem, this study details how dissonance is managed through rationalizations in line with the Dawson (1999) framework. This framework is based on research of religious groups surviving prophetic disconfirmation and is employed here to highlight the contextual and socio-cultural underpinnings of rationalizations along with their supernatural and pseudo-religious qualities. Rationalizations reflect broader socio-cultural beliefs around morality, work, speculation, perseverance, and the supernatural. Implications for treatment are discussed.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Ambiguity and Abjection: Residents’ Reactions to a New Urban Casino

    • Authors: Paula Piritta Jääskeläinen, Michael Egerer, Matilda Hellman
      Pages: 87 - 96
      Abstract: While the social and economic costs and benefits of new gambling locations have been studied extensively, less is known about how new venues are experienced in view of city residents’ spatial and sociocultural identities. This study examines residents’ opinions and expectations on a new small-scale casino in the City of Tampere, Finland, as a case of new gambling opportunities in an urban setting. Nine focus group interviews were conducted with 43 Tampere residents three years prior to the scheduled casino opening. The study points out ways in which the residents struggled conceptually with the casino project. When speaking about it, participants drew on an imagery of popular culture, drawing a sharp line between casino gambling and the everyday convenience gambling so omnipresent in Finnish society. As residents of a historical industrial urban region, the participants positioned themselves as critical towards the municipality’s aims to brand the venue in a larger experience economy entity. By drawing on the concepts of city image and city identity, the study is able to demonstrate that the cultural geographical intrusion of new physical gambling spaces can appear as harmful to the city character. In the studied case, this is likely to hamper the City of Tampere’s chances to prevail on the very same experience market, of which the new casino is part.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • A Genealogical Analysis of the Medical Model of Problem Gambling

    • Authors: Sean Wilcox
      Pages: 97 - 107
      Abstract: By applying Foucault’s genealogical approach, this article understands the ascension of the medical model of problem gambling as a happenstance and contingent effect of a new form of social control (biopower). The investigation reveals the cumulative effect of some of the heterogeneous components surrounding the medical model’s creation: discourses; institutions; laws; regulatory decisions; administrative measures; scientific proposition, and philanthropic, moral, and philosophical arguments. In the process, it becomes apparent that the medical model is an effect of a form of control that is embedded in the population itself as a norm and follows the schemata of confessional discourse. This power is disciplining individual bodies and regulating populations towards normality by making problem gamblers critically examine themselves and discursively reveal the results. However, the present subjectivity for problem gamblers (i.e., how they understand themselves and how they are understood by those who would improve them) is an effect of the type of power contained in the confession as well. A certain form of subjectivity is created by admitting ‘I am powerless over gambling.’ While the language problem gamblers use to describe themselves is a mere effect of power, it nevertheless determines how they think of themselves and their relationship with gambling.
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Book Review: Cassidy, Rebecca. (2020). Vicious Games: Capitalism and
           Gambling. Pluto Press. 240 pp. $34.95CAD. ISBN-13: 978-0-7453-4039-5
           (paperback)

    • Authors: Annie-Claude Savard
      Pages: 108 - 110
      Abstract: -
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
  • Book Review: Cassidy, Rebecca. (2020). Vicious Games: Capitalism and
           Gambling. Pluto Press. 240 pp. $34.95CAD. ISBN-13: 978-0-7453-4039-5
           (paperback)

    • Authors: Garry Smith
      Pages: 111 - 112
      Abstract: -
      PubDate: 2021-05-19
      Issue No: Vol. 2, No. 1 (2021)
       
 
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