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The Evolution of Responsible Gambling Policy and Practice: Insights for Asia from Australia

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Abstract

This paper draws on the Australian experience of problem gambling and responsible gambling to provide insights for Asian jurisdictions currently experiencing significant expansion in gambling. Specifically, it draws on a lifecycle approach to issues management to explain the emergence of problem gambling as a significant social and public health issue in Australia. It then documents how gambling operators in Australia have responded to this issue through the development and implementation of responsible gambling measures. Four developmental stages of responsible gambling policy and practice in Australia are discussed, from an elementary stage of corporate citizenship through to engaged and innovative stages, and to the next stage of integration into the business of gambling. Current pressures are identified that may result in Australian gambling operators reaching the so-called transforming stage of corporate citizenship in responsible gambling, where more effective and targeted measures are implemented. Insights are drawn from the Australian experience, which may be of relevance to the future of responsible gambling in Asia. The embedding of responsible gambling in corporate culture and business practice appears to be facilitated by numerous specific measures. These include: appropriate legislation; leadership; structural changes; resources and support mechanisms outside of the organization; effective relationships with key stakeholders; dedicated management; supervisory positions; staff training; and accountability and transparent reporting within the organization.

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Correspondence to Nerilee Hing.

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Keywords

  • Problem Gambling
  • Corporate Citizenship
  • Responsible Gambling
  • Transforming Stage
  • Elementary Stage