Gambling – Conceptual Framework and Taxonomy of Harms From Gambling


Gambling is an activity or practice of playing games of chance for a stake, usually in the form of money. However, there are also other forms of gambling where the stake is not real money. These include betting on sports events, lottery and gambling in the form of scratchcards or games like marbles and Pogs.

Generally, people use the term ‘gambling’ to describe any activity where the outcome is determined by chance rather than skill. It can include things like betting on a sporting event or buying a scratchcard, but it can also involve something as simple as buying a marbles game and wagering a set amount of money on it.

In some cases, it can be an addictive and damaging behaviour that causes harm to the person who gambles or others they affect. For example, some people can become addicted to slot machines or casinos.

There are some ways that you can stop gambling, including seeking help from a therapist or support group. It is also important to seek help for underlying mood disorders such as depression, anxiety or stress.

Harm from Gambling

There is no international consensus on what harms from gambling are, which limits research and public policy related to the issue. As such, there is a need for a conceptual framework and a taxonomy of harms to facilitate the development of more appropriate measures of harm.

To generate a framework of gambling related harm, data was collected from a range of sources and methodologies that included literature reviews, focus groups, interviews with professionals involved in the support and treatment of gambling problems and analysis of public forum posts for people experiencing gambling-related harms. This data was used to develop a conceptual framework and a taxonomy that captures the full breadth of harms experienced by those affected by gambling.