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UNLV’s IGI plans multidisciplinary research on responsible gambling, seeks donations

unlv’s-igi-plans-multidisciplinary-research-on-responsible-gambling,-seeks-donations

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he University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV)’s International Gaming Institute (IGI) is currently looking to raise funds for a new gaming research project that will carry out detailed analysis to study “responsible gaming measures”. Entain Foundation was the first donor of the project, having agreed to donate $20,000 each month, bringing the total donation to $240,000. 

The initiative’s founders hope to better define the lines between safe and unsafe gambling, identify potential policy gaps and apply their research to real-world settings.

This project will be spearheaded by industry veterans that bring together a combined 50 years of experience in the gaming industry: Current doctoral student at UNLV, Jennifer Shatley, who is a former executive of Caesars Entertainment Inc., created the responsible gambling program for the company; while Alan Feldman was in charge of the responsible gambling program at MGM Resorts International. They both play a major role in this program. 

Nevada researchers intend to tackle responsible gambling from as many angles as possible, including business, sociology, law and psychology. In doing so, they look forward to providing practical solutions for health and public policymakers, gaming operators, manufacturers, clinicians and the gaming industry at large. 

As reported by the Las Vegas Review Journal, Shatley has said that there is limited research on responsible gambling habits, and what research does exist mostly focuses on problem gambling. “From an operator perspective, that’s not very helpful”, she said, and indicated the goal for them should be to keep a sustainable customer base and implement responsible gaming in order to mitigate problem gambling, and/or to erradicate it. 

Entain also expressed their commitment to support this project on a long term basis as the company is spending both time and money to boost awareness of responsible gambling. Entain recently launched a mobile app that looks to promote and educate users about responsible gambling initiatives.

Stats show that over 5% of the United States citizens are vulnerable to developing a gambling addiction and close to 2% already battle a problem gambling habit. Entain Foundation and UNLV are researching preventive measures that will stop players from stepping over the line of entertainment and getting entangled in gambling addiction.

Feldman said that they are taking this project seriously and it will not be about “window dressing.” Some of the key focuses of this research project will include cashless gaming, rolling out best practices for casino employee training and getting casino operators to offer more robust responsible gambling programs.

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