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Strategy

National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms

The sole aim of this three-year National Strategy is to move faster and go further to reduce gambling harms.

Gambling Commission actions

The Gambling Commission’s independent research programme separates the setting of priorities for research, from the funding for research, and is designed to support delivery of the strategy.

As we learn more, the research programme will adapt and respond to continue to provide the evidence we need to find out what works to reduce gambling harms.

We will work with partners to establish a central repository of anonymised data to inform research.

To support the foundations for the data repository, the patterns of play research project will pilot the process of researchers identifying what data from online gambling should be collected to allow maximum benefit to inform action, and the Commission will drive progress with the industry to deliver that data.

This early step towards a data repository will also be set alongside the results of a scoping exercise currently underway about how further phases could be implemented, and what governance arrangements should be put in place to do so.

As a first step towards a research hub, the strategy microsite will host key research, and for projects delivered under the Gambling Commission’s research programme, be the home of research briefs, published reports and an assessment of key policy implications that arise.

In the first year of the strategy, the Commission will lead work to further embed the measuring gambling related harms framework (PDF), published in July 2018, through the research programme. This framework will help to develop a clear understanding of the hidden harms – and costs – of gambling, on resources, health and relationships.

Whilst we place a particular emphasis on the harms work to inform where preventative measures should be targeted, we are committed to other actions to make progress. These include driving live environment trials of preventative interventions as part of the research programme.

Where these are industry-based, such as more proactive safer gambling messages to consumers, the design of products and games, and the availability and promotion of safer gambling tools, the Commission is well-placed to apply our regulatory powers to make progress and to work with those with lived experience on how best to achieve these goals.

The Commission regularly collects consumer data on gambling behaviour including problem gambling rates. This sits outside of the research programme.

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