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Banner of the setting the evidence agenda conference, with an image of the Commission's Director of Research and Statistics

Looking forward to the Setting the Evidence Agenda Conference

The Gambling Commission is a people-focused regulator that’s evidence-led. So we need the best data, the best research we can get, in order to do our job and make gambling safer, fairer and crime free here in Great Britain.

Posted 2 March 2023 by Ben Haden

So that’s why on 9 March we have invited 150 of the leading stakeholders from research, academia, industry, our own advisory bodies and the third sector to discuss how we can help close the gaps in the knowledge we all have about gambling and those who gamble in Great Britain.

And now is a great time to bring everyone together

The last few years have seen an increasing range of consumer research, datasets and ‘big data’ approaches and analytics that can be applied to understanding gambling and gambling habits better. Let’s be honest - the collective understanding we all have of both general gambling behaviour, the risk posed to consumers, the harms experienced and what industry can do to minimise it effectively is not the sum of these parts. We’re all missing some of the pieces of this jigsaw.

We could not have a more relevant person than Alison Pritchard, Deputy National Statistician and Director General for Data Capability at the Office for National Statistics to kick off the day. Alison is leading the transformation in data usage which will see ever more integrated data put to effective and safe use across the private and public sectors.

We then have a have a broad programme of panels, presentations, engagement on key topics and Q&As for the day, with a diverse line-up of speakers from within and outside the industry. Through poster sessions from six developing research projects we are also giving early career researchers the chance to show some new thinking.

As excited as my team and the Commission are to be able to deliver this conference, we know it’s not without its challenges. We know that by having such a diverse range of views in the same room everyone is unlikely to agree on everything. But that’s okay. We are looking for a moment where we can all be honest, reflect on what we don’t know or lack the capability to appreciate and collaborate on what takes us forward the fastest.

I think the fact that we maxed out attendance for this Conference before we even closed RSVPs also shows we’re not the only ones who think getting together to discuss these issues is important. After the day, we’ll be publishing some reflections on the Conference as well, but to those of you attending, my team and the Commission are really looking forward to seeing you on 9 March.

About the author

Ben Haden is the Gambling Commission’s Director of Research and Statistics.

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