Mathematics-related specificity of problem-gambling awareness: Toward the adequacy of warning messages, counseling, and game descriptions
Current research aims to analyze and exploit the mathematical and epistemological dimensions of the gambling phenomenon in order for problem-gambling experts to account objectively for the specificity of gambling addiction among all kinds of addictions. Once the mathematics-related specificity is clearly established, we shall investigate how the adequacy of awareness tools (warning messages, counseling, and game descriptions) depends on such specificity, and draw upon a basic conceptual and theoretical framework that allows the design and development of these tools in an interdisciplinary setup involving the epistemology of gambling mathematics.
In such a framework, several hypotheses related to the effectiveness of prevention and counseling can be tested further, and the theoretical results can be applied to the development of enhanced awareness materials (general warning messages, math-related elements for counseling schemes, norms for game descriptions, gambling-math courses, and guides for counselors and gamblers, etc.).
This research submits to the premise that given the mathematical nature of both the design/characteristics of the games and some elements of gambling behavior (such as estimating, predicting and expecting), research on the prevention and treatment of problematic gambling cannot run exclusively in the psycho-medical field, and more complex interdisciplinary collaboration is required.
Dr. Catalin Barboianu (Applied mathematics, Epistemology of Mathematics, Mathematical Cognition), principal investigator
Dr. Mack Costello (behavior analysis, behavioral medicine, decision-making), co-investigator