Although gambling has numerous external effects, most studies of this industry focus on its economic benefits. The social costs, on the other hand, are often less measurable, and are largely nonmonetary. Because of this, these effects are often excluded from calculations. These social costs include the costs of gambling on individuals, families, and communities. Here are some of the key challenges in conducting gambling impact analysis. You may be surprised at how many social costs gambling causes.
Although gambling has numerous disadvantages, it is a popular tourist activity and is heavily regulated. A lot of money is wagered on legal gambling every year, and the illegal market may even exceed that figure. Lotteries are the most common form of gambling around the world, and state-licensed lotteries were largely introduced in Europe and the United States during the late 20th century. Most European countries offer organized football pools, as do some South American, Australian, and Asian countries. State-licensed betting on other sporting events is also common in most countries.
The social impact of gambling is significant. Casinos have caused property and living costs to rise faster than the average salary, and increased gambling availability has been linked to a higher incidence of social problems. Furthermore, increased gambling availability has created social inequality. Poorer individuals lose more money due to gambling and higher-income households spend more on it. As a result, these individuals create a social care burden that is often not directly related to their gambling activity.
Homelessness is associated with problem gambling. Problem gambling has many negative consequences for employment, including absenteeism and reduced working relationships. In some cases, it may even lead to termination. Some studies have found that nearly forty percent of problem gamblers say that their gambling negatively impacts their job performance and productivity. Moreover, 61% of problem gamblers have missed days of work because they were unable to stop gambling. In Finland, treatment-seeking gamblers evaluate their work performance, work stress, and other distractions that interfere with their ability to perform their job duties.
The social impact of gambling has long been understudied. Although the economic costs associated with problem gambling have been quantified, many other impacts are also unrecognized. It is impossible to measure the positive impact of gambling on a society without considering the costs to society. This means that the social impact of gambling is important and should not be overlooked. Even non-problem gamblers may experience negative effects due to gambling. A well-balanced evidence-based approach is essential to public policy on gambling.
Problem gambling can also lead to significant interpersonal harm, and it is estimated that five to 10 other people are affected by a gambling problem. These numbers may even be three to four times higher than the number of affected lives in the general population. According to the Centre for Gambling Research, about thirty percent of adults in New Zealand know someone who has a problem with gambling. Eight percent of problem gamblers experience some type of financial harm related to their gambling activities.