ICRG, In Beverly, MA, To Conduct Voluntary Self-Exclusion Research Project

Written By Matthew Bain on April 1, 2023Last Updated on April 4, 2023
GeoComply, ICRG research project for self-exclusion, from play-ma.com

GeoComply, the leading sportsbook geolocation software company, is funding a two-year problem gambling research project at the International Center for Responsible Gaming (ICRG), which is located in Beverly, Massachusetts.

The project will focus on the efficacy of voluntary self-exclusion programs for online and in-person gambling.

Massachusetts has two voluntary self-exclusion lists. One for casino gambling, and one for sports betting. Massachusetts Gaming Commission spokesperson Thomas Mills told Play MA the sports betting VSE list had 34 people, as of March 21, and the casino VSE list had approximately 1,350 people.

Voluntary self-exclusion in Massachusetts

In Massachusetts, self-exclusion term options include one yearthree yearsfive years or a lifetime. The gambler must also complete a reinstatement session with a problem gambling professional after your self-exclusion period ends before being able to use the gambling app or wager at the casino again.

If the numbers mentioned above seem low, it’s because they are. Part of this research project’s goal is to determine how to enhance the use and efficacy of these VSE programs.

“There is a necessity to determine whether enhancing these programs would result in more customer participation and whether this would be beneficial,” ICRG President Arthur B. Paikowsky said in a press release.

What will the GeoComply/ICRG project research?

According to the release, these are the main research topics.

  • What is the most effective type of self-exclusion in the long run?
  • What’s the best length for self-exclusion periods?
  • What should an operator or gaming commission consider before allowing a gambler back on an app or in a casino?
  • Should these lists not be called “self-exclusion” lists? Is that a negative description that deters people from enrolling?
  • What is the best registration method?

The ICRG will release the findings of this project in October 2025.

“We have been committed to responsible gambling initiatives since forming GeoComply over a decade ago,” GeoComply CEO Anna Sainsbury said. “We need more data to support the industry’s actions around RG, and I am really happy that we can support the ICRG’s research in this important area.”

What is the ICRG?

Responsible gambling advocated formed the ICRG in 1996. Its office is located in Beverly, Massachusetts, about 3 miles north of Salem and 23 miles north of Boston. Its main goal is to promote responsible gambling across the world. And it attempts to achieve this via problem gambling research, development of best practices for the industry and public awareness promotion.

In total, 9% of sports betting tax revenue in Massachusetts will fund the Public Health Trust Fund. This fund pays for most of the problem gambling resources and programs in the state.

Photo by Play MA
Matthew Bain Avatar
Written by

Matthew Bain

Matthew Bain started as Content Manager at Play MA in 2022. Before that, he spent six years as a sports reporter and then deputy sports editor for the Des Moines Register, during which time he won nine statewide journalism awards, including the Genevieve Mauck Stoufer Outstanding Young Iowa Journalists Award. As deputy sports editor, Matthew oversaw the Register’s recruiting coverage while also innovating the outlet’s high school sports coverage. Matthew graduated from San Diego State and grew up in California, but he’s somehow a Boston Celtics fan. Long story. Matthew also led coverage of Prop 26 vs. Prop 27 in the California sports betting election battle for Catena Media.

View all posts by Matthew Bain