Cambridge expert appointed to UBC gambling centre
Dr. Luke Clark has been named the inaugural director of the Centre for Gambling Research at UBC. (PHOTO FROM NEWS.UBC.CA)
The University of B.C. and the province are making a push to advance research into problem gambling, appointing an expert from the United Kingdom to lead the effort.
Dr. Luke Clark has been named the inaugural director of the Centre for Gambling Research at UBC, an endeavour receiving $2 million in funds from Victoria and the province’s gambling authority.
Clark was the leader of the largest study in the U.K. on pathological gamblers and is a faculty member at the University of Cambridge.
“It’s a very exciting opportunity,” Clark said. “I think it will enable us to move work we’ve been doing in the U.K. to the next level.”
According to UBC, the centre will work with academic independence from the B.C. Lottery Corporation despite the funding.
Clark said he is hoping work conducted at the centre will lead to more evidence-based research being incorporated into gaming policy in the province.
Prof. Alan Kingstone, head of UBC’s department of psychology, said the centre is one of the few around the world dedicated to problem gambling.
Kingstone said the centre is lucky to have Clark join the program.
Clark said the array of games and levels of problem gambling are similar to his homeland, but is still learning the finer details of B.C.’s gambling regulations.
“I’m getting up to speed on it, there are a lot of nuances there that I’m learning about,” he said. “But at a fairly superficial level, at a basic level it’s very similar to the U.K.”