A gender perspective on gambling clusters in Sweden using longitudinal data

AIMS – This study describes five groups of gamblers and changes in their gambling involvement and gambling problems over four years with a particular focus on whether gambling problems among men and women develop differently within the five groups. DESIGN – The study sample is a subset of participants from the Swedish Longitudinal Gambling Study (Swelogs). Six different clusters of past-year gambling, based on frequency of participation in the nine most common forms of gambling in Sweden (lotteries, horses, number games, sports games, bingo, poker, slot machines, casino games or TV contests) were identified in Two-Way Cluster Analysis after the first wave of data collection in 2008/09. There were 2,508 individuals identified in EP1 (n=5,012) who then also participated in waves EP2 and EP3 and were selected for the present analysis. METHODS – Statistical analysis was done in SPSS 22.0 using Pearson’s Chi-Square test of Independence (or Fisher’s Exact test when the requirements or expected frequency were not met for Pearson’s Test), Mann-Whitney U-test and logistic regression. P-values below 0.05 were regarded as significant. RESULTS – Gambling remains gendered in Sweden. Even though the clusters are based on gambling activities, there are differences between men and women within the clusters as regards the gambling participation patterns. CONCLUSIONS – Men and women gamble differently, but they may still be equals in their total experience of gambling and in relation to how their gambling problems develop. All differences need to be taken into consideration when preventive actions or messages are created.

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