GVC Commit $5m To Responsible Gambling Study Through Harvard
GVC Holdings have pledged $5million towards a five-year research project on responsible gambling in conjunction with Harvard Medical School.
As part of the agreement, GVC – who own high-street heavyweights Ladbrokes and Coral – will provide researchers with anonymous customer data from across its wide range of sports betting and gaming products.
The data will be used by Harvard’s Division on Addiction faculty, known for their ground-breaking psychiatric research focusing on addictive behaviour, to gain insight into how and why problem gambling develops.
The study is part of GVC’s ‘Changing for the Bettor’ campaign, the company’s latest commitment to social responsibility in their industry having recently volunteered to reduce maximum stakes on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) in Northern Ireland.
GVC’s Director of Responsible Gaming Grainne Hurst welcomed Harvard’s willingness to get acquainted with the gambling operator’s data as the company strive for better awareness of addiction.
“Whilst the vast majority of our customers enjoy playing with us in a safe and fun environment we are aware that for some players, gambling can impact their lives negatively,” she said.
“We are committed to leading the industry in minimising potential harm caused by problem gambling.
“That is why we are today launching Changing for the Bettor and have partnered with Harvard faculty at the Division on Addiction to help us to better understand and tackle the issues around problem gambling.”
The data-driven approach to tackling gambling addiction will be a time-consuming task, but Dr Howard Shaffer – a director at Division on Addiction – insists the five-year plan is the only viable method of gaining true insight from which to act.
“It is only by taking an evidence-based approach to examining gambling that we can develop better strategies and tools to limit its potential to cause harm," he said.
"The collaboration with GVC that we have announced today will play a significant role in advancing our knowledge about gambling and intemperate gambling and is warmly welcomed.”
As the first gambling operator to have supported the voluntary ban on gambling advertisements on TV, GVC have been leading the way in the fight to promote responsible attitudes towards gambling ever since they received a £350,000 fine for misleading customers with adverts relating to free bets.
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