Monday, June 24, 2024

Problem Gambling in Birmingham

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Project lead: Professor Karen Rowlingson

Professor Karen Rowlingson, in conjunction with Carl Packman, in his role as Research and Good Practice Manager at Toynbee Hall, carried out a rapid assessment review of problem gambling in Birmingham, in consultation with key stakeholders in Birmingham City Council, the England Illegal Moneylending Team and the Gambling Commission.  

They reviewed the existing evidence around the extent and nature of gambling in the UK generally and in Birmingham in particular.  Karen and Carl also reviewed recent policy change in this field and recommended next steps for further action and research.

The report estimates that the number of problem gamblers in Birmingham is around 12,000, with a further 48,000 ‘at risk’ of problem gambling.  Groups, including those on lower income or unemployed, those from Asian/Asian British and Black British backgrounds, homeless people and those with mental health problems are all more likely to experience problems with gambling.  The research project concluded with recommendations for holding a ‘gambling summit’ event to share best practice and a more in-depth study with a broader range of stakeholders to explore further the extent and nature of problem gambling and gambling related harm in Birmingham.

Research objectives

  • To understand the size and scale of problem gambling in the UK and Birmingham specifically.
  • Identify correlations between problem gambling and different groups within society.
  • Ascertain key policies related to problem gambling at a national level.
  • Give recommendations for next steps in terms of research and actions.

Research team

  • Professor Karen Rowlingson, Professor of Social Policy and Deputy Head of College of Social Sciences, University of Birmingham.

  • Carl Packman, was Research and Good Practice Manager at Toynbee Hall, now Head of Corporate Engagement, Fair by Design Campaign, Barrow Cadbury Trust.

Partners and sponsors

The report has been funded by the Centre on Household Assets and Savings Management (CHASM) following discussion with the Birmingham Financial Inclusion Partnership which highlighted interest in this topic and so led to a short collaboration between CHASM and Toynbee Hall to produce a report for key stakeholders:

  • Birmingham City Council
  • England Illegal Moneylending Team
  • Gambling Commission


Problem Gambling Summit – co hosted by Birmingham Financial Inclusion Partnership and CHASM

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