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Jul 04

New research program on gambling in Sweden

Responding to and Reducing Gambling Problems Studies (Regaps) is a new Swedish research program on gambling in Sweden. It is funded by the research council Forte and planned to run for six years. Regaps is based at SoRAD (Centre for Social Research on Alcohol and Drugs) at the University of Stockholm.

(The following is based on the program description) The aim of Regaps is to provide helpful information in redesigning treatment and other responses to individual problematic gambling, and strategies to prevent and reduce problem gambling. The program will study gambling in five frames of reference.

  • The societal handling of problem gamblers. Areas of investigation include how gambling problems are defined, how caregiving personnel and agencies respond to help seekers, and how treatment provision affects and fits into the life trajectory of problem gamblers.
  • Measurement of gambling problems. The program will develop and test appropriate instruments for measuring, in the Swedish context, aspects of gambling behavior, problems and dependence.
  • Comorbidity. The study will contribute to disentangling overlaps and establishing time-ordering between problem gambling and other psychiatric disorders.
  • Policy development and impact. The program will draw on reviews of studies of the effects of gambling regulation, and as it becomes appropriate will conduct policy impact studies on changes in Swedish gambling policies.
  • International comparison. The program will set Swedish developments in treatment monitoring and policy measures concerning gambling in a cross-national comparative context.

In practical terms, the program aims to offer analyses which foster the improvement of Swedish responses to problem gambling. The research consortium is also committed to fostering a critical perspective on epidemiology and treatment service studies. It will also contribute evidence which would point future policy toward greater social re-inclusion as well as more effective reduction of problems caused by gambling.

Project coordinator: Jenny Cisneros Örnberg. Program members: Kristina Sundqvist, Eva Samuelsson, Peter Wennberg, Jukka Törrönen, Robin Room, Ludwig Kraus, Anne H. Berman, Ingeborg Rossow, Rachel Volberg and Per Binde. My role in the project is mostly advisory.

Regaps is to date the largest and most ambitious university-based research program on gambling in Sweden. I look forward working with the Regaps team!

For Swedes:
Read about Regaps in Swedish
Apply for a position as researcher in the Regaps program (deadline August 9)

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