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Understanding Gambling: Impacts and Social Networks Across the Lifecourse

  • Start date: 12 January 2010
  • End date: 31 January 2013

This study aims to explore the impacts of gambling over the lifecourse of individual players as well as across their wider social networks. Through a series of in-depth, narrative interviews it will interview specially selected players who are part of a cohort from a longitudinal qualitative study. This cohort includes both problem and recreational gamblers recruited from a range of venues, including casinos, betting shops, bingo halls and counselling centres. Tracking their behaviour over two years has shown how problems with gambling vary over time and are influenced by a range of social and cultural factors, as well as gamblers' own attitudes and self perceptions, in what we describe as 'gambling careers'

We will continue to explore continuity and change among our existing cohort, focusing on key moments of behaviour change, and will also begin to explore the wider impacts of gambling on social networks and communities. This focus will include families, children, colleagues and friends.  We are particularly interested in the emotional, social and financial consequences of problem gambling on respondents, and will focus on issues relating to employment, debt, criminal activity and relationship breakdown, particularly in relation to individuals from disadvantaged or marginalised groups, in interviews.