The External and Internal Impacts of Gambling


The external and internal impacts of gambling are significant, and can affect more than just the gambler. These impacts are manifested in terms of costs and benefits, including social, financial, and labor impacts. Over time, these impacts can change the course of an individual’s life and the lives of entire communities. For example, long-term effects of gambling can cause people to become bankrupt or homeless.

Various studies have shown that gambling can have negative impacts on the workplace. Some researchers have found that problem gambling can lead to absenteeism, impaired working relationships, and even job termination. Furthermore, 40% of problem gamblers report that their gambling affects their job performance, while 61% report that they have missed work in order to gamble. Furthermore, a recent study in Finland found that work performance of gamblers suffers due to distractions and fatigue.

Gambling is a huge international industry. In 2009, the global legal gambling market was valued at $335 billion. Gambling can be conducted with monetary or non-monetary materials. For example, people who play the game marbles may wager marbles, while Magic: The Gathering players may stake collectible game pieces.

Economists have also looked at the economic and social impacts of gambling. However, this approach tends to focus on the negative impacts of gambling, and neglects its benefits. While the economic impact of gambling is relatively easy to measure, the social and emotional impacts are much harder to measure. Moreover, the harms of gambling extend to nongamblers.