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The University of Bristol has launched Britain’s first academic research centre dedicated to developing multidisciplinary approaches examining gambling harm, addiction and social complexities. Launched as the Gambling Harms Research Centre (GHRC), the unit aims to transform research of gambling harms by developing deeper academic resources and evidence-led insights to share learnings with domestic and international stakeholders.

The GHRC will operate as an independent hub, with its funding secured by a £4 million grant commissioned by GambleAware, to help operate the facility over a period of the next five years.

“This investment, awarded following a rigorous selection process, underlines GambleAware’s commitment to independent, world-class research to build the evidence base on gambling harm. GHRC is a major step forward, bringing together new and exciting methodologies with a clear focus on impact in one of the country’s top universities. We are incredibly excited by the long-term benefits of this work by driving new public health approaches to reduce gambling harms for a wide range of communities,” Zoë Osmond, CEO of GambleAware, said.

“We desperately need interdisciplinary research on a large scale to truly understand the complexities of gambling harm as a serious, current public health issue. The University of Bristol, home to world-leading research centres in Health, Innovation, Poverty, Co-production and Digital Futures, has already brought together researchers from every Faculty to be part of the new Hub,” said Co-Director Agnes Nairn, Pro-Vice-Chancellor of Global Engagement and Professor of Marketing.

“Our aim is to attract the very best international researchers from computer scientists to anthropologists to work with us on tackling this very under-researched area,” Agnes Nairn added.

“I welcome this additional resource from GambleAware to help deepen our understanding and awareness of gambling-related harms. We are currently undertaking our own comprehensive review to ensure that the protections in place to prevent harm are right for the digital age, and we will be publishing a white paper shortly,” DCMS Gambling Minister Chris Philp said.

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