30 J.L. & Soc. Pol'y 1 (2018)

handle is hein.journals/jlsp30 and id is 1 raw text is: 
Bedford et al.: Keeping Chance in Its Place: The Socio-Legal Regulation of Gambli


Keeping Chance in Its Place: The Socio-Legal Regulation of
Gambling


KATE BEDFORD*, DONAL CASEY° & ALEXANDRA FLYNNO

IN THE WINTER OF 2010, DRIVING THROUGH A BLIZZARD to a research interview outside
of Ottawa, one of the co-editors of this special issue-Kate Bedford-slid and spun off the
road in her rental car. The interviewee-an 80-year-old man who organized a small weekly
bingo game-helped dig her out. Sitting in the community centre with him afterwards, thawing,
there was ample opportunity for Bedford to reflect on the diverse meanings attached to
gambling and the complex ways in which it is regulated. The interviewee talked about 'use of
proceeds' forms and validating expenses payments for volunteers, describing a gambling
landscape that seemed a long way from dominant law and policy conversations. While
commentators on the global financial crisis were drawing repeated analogies to casinos and
poker, the less glamourous world of small-town bingo seemed to have slipped from view. This
special issue is, in part, an effort to bring it back.

       In 2013, inspired by research in Ontario, Bedford began work on a large, international
research grant into gambling regulation.' Rather than focusing on relatively well-researched
forms of gambling, such as casinos, the project centred bingo as a distinctively under-studied
gambling sector.2 The second co-editor, Donal Casey, joined the initiative in 2015, believing
that online gambling could provide a crucial new lens for his research into European Union
(EU) law and regulation. As part of the research project, Bedford, Casey, and others
convened a conference at the University of Kent in 2016 on socio-legal approaches to
gambling, where scholars from nine countries and a number of disciplines presented their
research. The seven papers that we have collected in this special issue are drawn from that
conference, including one from our third co-editor, Alexandra Flynn.

In this Introduction to the collection, we lay out what these papers offer to the field of gambling
research and beyond. To begin, we identify the scholarly approaches to gambling upon which
we wish to build (Part I). Then, we specify three contributions we seek to make through our
socio-legal endeavors. First, this collection seeks to foreground the diverse, vernacular forms
and places of play that are sometimes overlooked in gambling scholarship (Part II). Second,
the papers take a distinctive pluralist approach that recognizes the multi-layered character of
gambling regulation (Part III). Third, and finally, the interdisciplinary and methodologically-
diverse nature of this special issue allows the papers, alongside the contributions in the Voices



Kate Bedford is Professor of Law at Birmingham Law School, University of Birmingham.
Donal Casey is a Lecturer in Law at Kent Law School, University of Kent (UK).
  Alexandra Flynn is an Assistant Professor in the City Studies program at the University of Toronto
(Scarborough) and will be joining the Allard School of Law at the University of British Columbia as an Assistant
Professor in January 2019.
' Economic and Social Research Council, ES/J02385X/1, A Full House: Developing A New Socio-Legal Theory
of Global Gambling Regulation (2013), online: <researchcatalogue.esrc. ac.uk/grants/ES.J02385X. 1/read>
2 See Kate Bedford et al, The Bingo Project: Rethinking Gambling Regulation (2016), online (pdf):
<kent.ac.uk/thebingoproject/resources/Bingo-Project-report-final.pdf> [perma.cc/232A-T9GB]; Kate Bedford,
The Bingo Project, online: <kent.ac.uk/thebingovroect/index.html> _[perma.cc/Z6FJ-93BL1.


Published by Osgoode Digital Commons, 2018

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