The Relationship Between Exclusions from Gambling Arcades and Accessibility: Evidence from a Newly Introduced Exclusion Program in Hesse, Germany [subscription access article]

Strohäker, T. & Becker, T. (2018). Journal of Gambling Studies: doi.org/10.1007/s10899-018-9762-2

Abstract: An exclusion system for gambling arcades has been introduced recently in the state of Hesse. The aim of this paper is to identify significant predictors that are useful in explaining the variation of exclusions between different Hessian communities. Next to socio-demographic factors, we control for three different accessibility variables in two models: the number of electronic gambling machines (EGMs) in model I, and the number of locations and density of gambling machines at a location in model II. We disentangle the association between EGMs and exclusions of model I into a location and a clustering effect. Considering the socio-demographic variables, the explanatory power of our cross-sectional models is rather low. Only the age group of the 30–39 years old and those who are not in a partnership (in model I) yield significant results. As self-exclusion systems reduce availability for the group of vulnerable players, this analysis provides evidence for the assumption that the two groups—pathological gamblers and vulnerable players—seem to have little overlap concerning sociodemographic characteristics. The accessibility variables, on the other hand, turn out to be significantly associated with the number of exclusions. All three of them are statistically significant and their association is positive. The results of model II show that the location effect is more pronounced then the clustering effect of EGMs, i.e. the effect of an additional single-licensed arcade on the number of exclusions is stronger than the increase in the number of license at one location. Article details and access options

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An Ecological Approach to Electronic Gambling Machines and Socioeconomic Deprivation in Germany

Xouridas, S., Jasny, J., & Becker, T.
In Germany, gambling research has primarily focused on the broader population in prevalence studies, neglecting the importance and influence of the local socioeconomic context in the development and maintenance of gambling disorders. To analyze the interplay between contextual and compositional factors in the market for electronic gambling machines (EGMs) in Germany, we assessed the EGM densities and socioeconomic deprivation in 244 local communities within Baden-Wuerttemberg. Our results suggest that EGM density is statistically associated with 3 socioeconomic determinants: The shares of migrants, unemployed, and high-school-educated people in the communities are statistically significant variables in our linear regression model, whereas younger age, male gender, and marital status exhibit no statistical associations with EGM density. The share of unemployed people is the only variable of statistical and practical significance. Our analysis advocates area-based policy measures to minimize gambling-related harm. By decreasing EGM densities in communities with high levels of unemployment, we expect to protect at-risk population strata that are most vulnerable to gambling exposure.

Exposure to Gambling Advertisements and Gambling Behavior in Young People

A cross-sectional survey of 4617 adolescents and young adults from 38 schools in two German states was conducted in 2014 to assess the association between gambling advertisements and gambling behavior. Exposure to ten gambling advertisements was measured with masked ad images; students indicated contact frequency and brand recall. Main outcomes were several gambling behaviors including probable pathological gambling assessed with the South Oaks Gambling Screen (SOGS ≥ 5). A total of 65.4 % of the students reported gambling at least once in their life; 42.2 % gambled in the last 12 months; 6.9 % gambled in the last week, and 2.8 % reported probable pathological gambling. The average frequency that one of the selected ads had been seen at least once was 29.5 %, the average brand recall rate was 9.4 %. After adjustment for confounding, multilevel mixed-effects logistic regressions revealed that high gambling ad exposure was positively related to all assessed gambling outcomes, with the strongest association for weekly gambling. Future studies need to clarify the temporal sequence and specificity of these associations.