Student Perspective | Judith Glynn | PhD

University of Gibraltar seemed perfectly situated to offer me that expansion of my worldview, with the intimate support of a small team and the excitement of building something together
13th December 2021
Judith Glynn, originally from Canada, is a Commonwealth Scholar, and one of the first PhD students with the Centre of Excellence in Responsible Gaming (CERG).

What does being a Commonwealth student mean to you?

First, it is a high honour to be awarded this scholarship. Growing up in Canada the Commonwealth felt like a faraway concept, and I was troubled by the colonial origin of it. Now, I think that regardless of the origin of these ties, being part of the Commonwealth is more important than ever in a fractured world. I see the chance to work and study with people from worlds entirely different from mine, and this is a blessing. I am grateful for the bond of the Commonwealth and the global focus of this scholarship.

Why did you choose Gibraltar?

The Centre of Excellence in Responsible Gaming (CERG) was definitely the draw. Everything seemed right. I was excited by the chance to be among the first PhD students at the CERG. I have worked in this field for years and always wanted to pursue my PhD. In North America, it is too easy to be insular. I wanted a chance to be part of what is happening in my field in Europe and the rest of the world. University of Gibraltar seemed perfectly situated to offer me that expansion of my worldview, with the intimate support of a small team and the excitement of building something together.

What is special about doing your PhD here?

I cannot think of a more inspiring place to study, with the sea and the immense sky. Students can become hermits, working hard indoors all the time. Here, the blend of historic military architecture with modern design, the openness of the campus and its location here at Europa Point are all stunning. There are constant visual reminders to remember ancient history, be humbled by nature’s beauty, and raise our gaze to the future.

What would you say to someone else who might be considering a PhD with us?

Come, just come.

Describe your PhD project

It is a multistage project to: 1) test and document the best indicators and data sources for identifying gamblers who are exhibiting risk in the online environment, 2) intervene in ways that are simple and effective, 3) provide a framework for measuring the effectiveness of this system, and continuously improve it.

What type of research does it involve and what skills will you be learning?

The most important skills I will build are experimental research methods and more complex statistical analysis. In my previous studies and work, my strongest focus was on qualitative methods such as focus groups and in-depth interviews, and the use of quantitative methods mainly in survey research. My PhD will involve more complex modeling and some experimentation.

Will there be any partners/stakeholders on your project?

I see two key stakeholder groups.
The CERG team has extensive international research connections. So, from a research perspective there is the chance to collaborate with researchers internationally. At the same time there is a strong focus on the Remote Gambling industry that is well-established here in Gibraltar, and the chance to collaborate with industry in understanding their research and knowledge needs to help inform their responsible gambling efforts.

Why should the public know about this topic?

While gambling has likely been a part of human relations forever, it is more and more omnipresent in our lives, available at any time on any device. It is an increasingly important economic, social, and political issue. Policy makers, regulators, industry, and health and social service stakeholders are all grappling with how to maximize benefits while protecting the most vulnerable. Research is the key to these efforts; rigorous research that leads to practical measures is urgently needed.

What will be the wider impact of your research?

A recent study by Public Health England (2021) found that, despite having the lowest gambling participation rates, the most socio-economically deprived and disadvantaged groups in England have the highest levels of harmful gambling, a situation they described as likely to make existing health inequalities worse.
This distribution of harm is likely similar in other countries. The more we can simplify and standardize these processes – to identify players who are at risk as early as possible, and to intervene in ways that are practical and effective – the closer we can come to a safer experience for all those who gamble, especially those who are most vulnerable.
  • PhD

    PhD by Research

    Our PhD by research programme is based on independent study, guided by your assigned supervisors and support system. It typically takes a minimum of three years to complete full-time, or a minimum of five years when studied part-time.[...]

    FT 3 to 5 Years/ PT 4 to 8 Years

    No Placement option

    Full/Part Time

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