Submission Type

Presentation

Submission Title

Do gambling products provide positive net utility to consumers?

Session Title

Session 2-3-B: Responsible Gambling and Consumer Behavior

Location

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

Start Date

29-5-2019 1:45 PM

End Date

29-5-2019 3:10 PM

Disciplines

Health Economics | Health Psychology

Abstract

Gambling has recreational benefits, but also harms some players. Two novel methods were adapted from the Burden of Disease (BoD) approach, the Time-Trade Off and Visual Analogue Scale, to measure both positive and negative contributions of gambling to people's quality of life. A population-representative sample of 5000 Tasmanians (2534 female) were surveyed on both gambling benefits and harms, which included respondents who were gamblers and people affected by someone else's gambling. Most gamblers indicated that gambling neither improved nor hindered their quality of life on the two measures (82.5% and 72.6%, respectively). Including responses from both gamblers and affected others, a weighted average of the change in quality of life was calculated for the average Tasmanian. Using the two BoD methods, gambling showed either a very small gain (+0.05%) or a more dramatic net-utility loss (-1.9%) on a per capita basis. On current evidence, gambling produces little or negative net benefits to Tasmanians in terms of consumer surplus.

Keywords

EMG, Lottery, Harm, Benefit, Surplus, QALY, DALY

Author Bio

Prof. Matthew Rockloff completed a Ph.D. in psychology from Florida Atlantic University in 1999, and is the current Head of the Experimental Gambling Research Laboratory at CQUniversity. Prof Rockloff was named in the Top 10 Unijobs Lecturer of the Year Awards in 2012, 2013 and 2014. He is the recipient of the 2017 Ig Noble Prize in Economics for research on how contact with a live crocodile affects a person's willingness to gamble.

Funding Sources

This research was funded by the Tasmanian Department of Treasury and Finance (DTF). The DTF consulted on the survey design.

Competing Interests

The author has no conflicts of interest to declare in relation to this work.

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May 29th, 1:45 PM May 29th, 3:10 PM

Do gambling products provide positive net utility to consumers?

Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada

Gambling has recreational benefits, but also harms some players. Two novel methods were adapted from the Burden of Disease (BoD) approach, the Time-Trade Off and Visual Analogue Scale, to measure both positive and negative contributions of gambling to people's quality of life. A population-representative sample of 5000 Tasmanians (2534 female) were surveyed on both gambling benefits and harms, which included respondents who were gamblers and people affected by someone else's gambling. Most gamblers indicated that gambling neither improved nor hindered their quality of life on the two measures (82.5% and 72.6%, respectively). Including responses from both gamblers and affected others, a weighted average of the change in quality of life was calculated for the average Tasmanian. Using the two BoD methods, gambling showed either a very small gain (+0.05%) or a more dramatic net-utility loss (-1.9%) on a per capita basis. On current evidence, gambling produces little or negative net benefits to Tasmanians in terms of consumer surplus.