Lottery Gambling: A Review

Abstract

This paper presents an exhaustive review of the literature on lottery gambling involving numbers games, lotto, and scratch cards. Results provide tentative answers to the question why people buy lotteries, and support the theory of judgment under uncertainty, cognitive theory of gambling, and theory of demand for gambles. Results also indicate some potential addictiveness of this form of gambling. Youths buy different forms of lotteries and the best predictor of their lottery purchases is their parents’ lottery participation. Contrary to the myth that a big lottery win will ruin the winners’ lives, lottery winners tend to be well-adjusted and their life quality seems to improve. Suggestions for future research are discussed.

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Acknowledgement

The author is indebted to Dr. Thomas J. Knutson for his assistance in the literature search, Dr. Robert Ladouceur for his valuable advice and comments on the earlier draft of this paper, and two anonymous reviewers for their helpful suggestions.

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Correspondence to V. Ariyabuddhiphongs.

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Ariyabuddhiphongs, V. Lottery Gambling: A Review. J Gambl Stud 27, 15–33 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10899-010-9194-0

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Keywords

  • Lottery gambling
  • Theory of judgment under uncertainty
  • Cognitive theory of gambling
  • Theory of demand for gambles
  • Lotteries’ potential addictiveness
  • Adolescent lottery gambling
  • Life after winning lotteries