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Leisure or Livelihoods? A Participatory Study of Youth Perspectives on Gambling and its Social, Economic and Health Impacts in Ghana and Malawi

How does commercial gambling in sub-Saharan Africa affect individual and community well-being?

This project adopts a participatory action research approach to give voice to youth perspectives on the growth of commercial gambling across sub-Saharan Africa, including its differentiated impacts on individual and community well-being. Drawing on a comparative case study of Ghana and Malawi, as exemplars of, respectively, a mature and an emerging gambling market, the research team aims to empower young people to convey the changing social and economic significance of gambling in their communities, including the extent to which technological advances have reshaped attitudes towards gambling practices, and how this may have wider implications for traditional conceptualisations of work, livelihood and social mobility. Youth participants will play an active role in the design, collection and dissemination of research data, including the sharing of co-creative outputs with policy-makers, academics and non-governmental organisations in order to foster critical awareness of the public health risks posed by gambling across the Global South.

Research team: Dr Darragh McGee, University of Bath; Professor Gerda Reith, University of Glasgow; Dr Christopher Bunn, University of Glasgow; Mr Michael Udedi, Ministry of Health, Malawi; Dr Joana Salifu Yendork, University of Ghana, Ghana; Dr Franklin Norvi Glozah, University of Ghana, Ghana

Project part of

Youth Futures

This programme aims to examine the contributions of young people to the UN’s 2030 Agenda, bringing a youth lens to the global sustainable development challenges.


We foster international collaboration in the humanities and social sciences, and promote the sharing of international perspectives on global challenges.