SBC News UKGC launches data intelligence projects of the Gambing Review  

UKGC launches data intelligence projects of the Gambing Review  

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) stands by its assessment that analysing operator data is the best way to fill knowledge gaps, governing the UK gambling sector.

The assessment was made by Ben Haden, the Commission’s Programme Director of Insights and Engagement, referencing data and intelligence developments undertaken in the past year.

Haden cited: “Operator data is a rich resource in terms of ensuring how we understand how the market is developing, appreciate how interventions we make are (or aren’t) having an impact and at a fundamental level ensure we charge the right fees and can forecast and manage income and finances.”

Interpreting industry data, the Commission has the support of 120 leading stakeholders in academia, gambling, research, the third sector and advisory bodies.

Expanding its body of stakeholders, seeks to “close the gaps in the knowledge we all have about gambling and those who gamble in Great Britain.”

In May the UKGC’s intelligence unit published the “Evidence Gaps and Priorities 2023 to 2026” report highlighting the need for more detailed operator data.  The demand was further emphasised by the Government’s White Paper calling for greater regulatory oversight on data.

As such, in the next six months the UKGC’s intelligence unit will prioritise the actions points of enhancing ‘Regulatory Returns’ and launching a ‘Detailed Dataset Pilot’.

A revision of regulatory returns is needed to improve operator’s datasets by removing outdated terms. The Commission will examine whether to increase reporting frequency from annually to quarterly, with a consultation scheduled in November.

Additionally, a Dataset Pilot will be launched to see whether the commission can gather daily aggregated consumer data from operators. Pilot datasets from operators aim to assist the UKGC in understanding the effects of policy changes, as demanded by the Gambling Act Review.

Evidence gathered from the Commission’s two new projects will be triangulated with existing consumer surveys and other assets to help form a  more comprehensive perspective of UK Gambling’s current make-up.

Haden concluded: “We think data like this will really help us understand the impact of policy changes, in particular as a result of the Gambling Act Review. When we evaluate, we want to be able to get early indications of impact, where we may need to take different action as a result. It may also mean less ad-hoc requests from operators in relation to each change.”

These two projects are just the start of looking to extract more value from operator data, as well as other datasets but it’s an exciting part of our drive to use the best evidence we can in our work. And better evidence driven by better data, will lead to better regulation.

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