Oct. 22, 2021


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UNLV International Gaming Institute to Assess How Policymakers Research Online Gambling and Sports Wagering

The assessment, “The Big Questions: Online Gambling and Sports Wagering,” to identify a responsible path forward for U.S. gambling

LAS VEGAS (June 30, 2020) – As states across the country consider the possibility of legalizing online gambling and/or sports wagering, legislators and regulators face many unanswered questions about the potential impacts, both positive and negative. The UNLV International Gaming Institute announced today a major new study to answer these questions through assessing the U.S. sports betting and internet gaming markets.

The objective of the study is to:

  • Identify the most important questions that policymakers and stakeholders are asking when looking to understand online gambling and sports wagering
  • Provide the most up-to-date, evidence-based, scientific information to inform conversations
  • Investigate the U.S. gambling market's structure to propose a responsible, sustainable way forward through implementing regulatory best practices in the post-COVID world

The study is being funded by GVC Foundation US, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting responsible gambling and sports integrity. An initial report will be issued by July 31, with a more detailed report published in the fall.

“We’re at a crucial point in the development of U.S. gambling. COVID-19 has disrupted every area of life, including professional sports, mental health, and betting markets, and it’s more important than ever that we chart the course of this impactful industry. Addressing challenges currently facing the gambling industry will lead to better outcomes for all,” said Martin Lycka, Trustee of GVC Foundation US and Director of Regulatory Affairs for GVC Holdings.

“There is perhaps no U.S. industry more complicated, dynamic, and impactful than gambling. It’s crucial that we gain a better understanding of the questions that policymakers are asking so we can serve as effective resources of information and guide public policy discussions in a meaningful way,” said Bill Pascrell, III, Trustee of GVC Foundation US and Partner at PPAG.

"At the UNLV International Gaming Institute, we take pride in putting together 'dream teams' to conduct independent, scientific evaluations of the big questions of the day. Certainly, whether and how to pursue legalization of online wagering and sports wagering is one of those big questions in the U.S.,” said Bo Jason Bernhard, Executive Director of UNLV-IGI. “The good news is that research teams from all over the world have been advancing our understanding of the key issues at play here, and we look forward to providing a critical evaluation of these research findings to help policymakers make the best decisions possible."

“Effective public policy is always best served by an evidence-based approach to its creation,” said Alan Feldman, Distinguished Fellow in Responsible Gaming at IGI and Chairman of the International Center for Responsible Gaming. “In order to provide the necessary player protections as well as ensure a stable and well-regulated marketplace, policies should be based on soundly research evidence rather than opinion or conjecture. It is our hope to contribute to the body of knowledge in this area so that the public can benefit from this activity and whatever harms may arise can be minimized to the greatest extent possible.”

About the University of Nevada, Las Vegas International Gaming Institute

UNLV’s International Gaming Institute (IGI) is the world’s largest academic institute dedicated to the rigorous and scientific study of the global gambling industry. Recently, the IGI has been hailed as “the global intellectual capital of gambling” by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval, and “The Harvard of Gaming” by Global Gaming Business. The IGI’s areas of focus include research on problem gambling, economic and social impacts of gaming, internet gaming, regulation and policy, and promoting diversity in global gaming industry leadership structures.  

About GVC Foundation US

GVC Foundation US is a first-of-its-kind nonprofit dedicated to promoting responsible gambling, sports integrity and corporate compliance in the U.S. The Foundation was launched by the GVC Global Foundation and GVC Holdings PLC (LSE: GVC), one of the world’s largest sports betting and gaming groups, operating both online and in the retail sector.