How does religiosity influence gambling? A cross-cultural study between Portuguese and English youth

Calado, F. ORCID: 0000-0003-2906-7279, Vernon, M. ORCID: 0000-0002-9269-9802, Nuyens, F. ORCID: 0000-0002-8125-5229, Alexandre, J. and Griffiths, M.D. ORCID: 0000-0001-8880-6524, 2023. How does religiosity influence gambling? A cross-cultural study between Portuguese and English youth. Journal of Gambling Studies. ISSN 1050-5350

1843918_Griffiths.pdf - Published version

Download (868kB) | Preview


Research has shown that religion can play a protective role in diverse risky behaviors among young people. However, very little is known about the effect of religion in gambling, especially among young problem gamblers. A strong moral belief regarding gambling may prevent adolescents and young adults engaging in gambling and developing problems. Nevertheless, some evidence suggests that religion might have an influence on gambling cognitive distortions (i.e., some religious beliefs might influence the conceptions of chance and luck, which may contribute to an increase in gambling participation). The present study examined the different effects that religion can have on gambling behavior, in two different cultural contexts (i.e., Portugal and England), characterized by different religious affiliations. A sample (n = 725) comprising Portuguese (n = 312) and English (n = 413) adolescents and young adults completed an online survey. The findings indicated that Portuguese youth were more religious than their English counterparts. Moreover, religiosity was associated with lower gambling engagement among participants in both samples. Mediation analyses also showed that the cognitive distortion of illusion of control mediated the relationship between religiosity and problem gambling among the Portuguese participants, and the interpretative bias was a significant mediator in the English sample. The study’s findings suggest that religion can have a protective role on gambling behaviors. However, further research is needed to explore the interactive role of religion and cognitive distortions.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Journal of Gambling Studies
Creators: Calado, F., Vernon, M., Nuyens, F., Alexandre, J. and Griffiths, M.D.
Publisher: Springer Science and Business Media LLC
Date: 9 December 2023
ISSN: 1050-5350
Rights: © The Author(s) 2023 This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Jeremy Silvester
Date Added: 13 Dec 2023 12:08
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2023 12:08

Actions (login required)

Edit View Edit View


Views per month over past year


Downloads per month over past year