Towards Responsible e-Gambling: Assessing the Perceived Opportunities and Risks Associated with Digital Gambling


As electronic or e-gambling services widen both the reach and scope of gambling practice, a new generation of gamblers is playing in previously non-existent ways. From related fields we know that behaviors that shift to the Internet change both in form and intensity (i.e. excessive online video gaming), and induce new norms (i.e. the acceptance of porn, sexting, partner-seeking ads). The research on these changes for e-gambling is extremely limited. This means we have very little knowledge regarding the risks and opportunities that e-gambling present. Yet, this information is crucial for responsible gambling efforts.

The current study aims to extend our understanding of this shift. It will, first, assess e-gamblers’ perceptions of risks and opportunities. Secondly, it will explore the drivers behind e-gambling behavior, which will aid with targeted (digital) prevention and intervention, and ultimately, contribute to clinical assessment of gambling behavior. Research on traditional gambling has successfully applied the theory of planned behavior to understand why people gamble. This theory explains behavior through attitudes, norms, and control-beliefs. We aim to study e-gambling through this established framework with a specific focus on the opportunities and risks associated with e-gambling. Research questions will be answered using a mixed methods approach, which will involve a qualitative study and a representative national sample quantitative study.

Duration of the project

The project runs from December 2015 – December 2016.

Staff involved

Financed by

  • Belgian National Lottery (Nationale Loterij), Responsible Gaming program