August 24, 2023 3 min read


Germany: DSWV Flags Incorrect Assumptions about Problem Gambling

The country's association of sports betting providers criticized misinterpretation of data regarding problem gambling

The German association of sports betting providers, Deutsche Sportwettenverband (DSWV), released a new statement, criticizing media reports that misinterpreted results from a 2021 Gambling Survey. In particular, the DSWV was critical of the representation of the number of people, identified as problem gamblers. The announcement comes after multiple media outlets released reports related to the gambling probe, claiming that the number of people affected by problem gambling in Germany grew from 400,000 to 1.4 million with the entry of Germany’s Interstate Gambling Treaty in 2021. The DSWV rejected those claims, stating that such a conclusion is not possible.

Mathias Dahms, DSWV’s president, explained that the association welcomes discussions that are based on accurate facts and data, regarding gambling behavior in the country. However, he explained that comparisons and derivations can be made only when the used data can be verified. “The evaluation of the State Treaty planned for the end of 2026 must take into account the experience of all stakeholders,” explains Dahms.

The DSWV welcomes a data- and fact-based discussion on gaming behavior in Germany. However, the derivations must be conclusive and based on verified facts.

Mathias Dahms, president of the DSWV

The 2021 Gambling Study Marked a Starting Point

Citing data from prevalence studies from the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA), the DSWV explained that the “number of people with problem gambling behavior to be stable or slightly declining.” The association confirmed that in 2021, the methodology for collecting this data was changed and the Gambling Survey at the time, marked the first measurement by the Institute for Interdisciplinary Addiction and Drug Research (ISD).

The 2021 Survey attempts to provide a starting point for recording the effects of the new legal regulations – in a sense, a zero measurement at the time the State Gambling Treaty 2021 comes into force. Therefore, reliable conclusions about the effects of the Interstate Treaty are not possible on the basis of this survey,

explains the DSWV

Researchers at the time confirmed that this “methodology reboot” makes the newly collected data compatible with previous figures only to a limited extent. This, in other words, means that a like-for-like comparison between the aforementioned study with studies from previous years isn’t possible and if such assumptions were made by different media outlets, they would be misleading.

The DSWV acknowledged that the 2021 survey was rather a starting point. Finally, the association said that reliable conclusions on the effect of the 2021 Interstate Treaty on Gambling based on this survey in comparison to older surveys cannot be made.


Jerome is a welcome new addition to the Gambling News team, bringing years of journalistic experience within the iGaming sector. His interest in the industry begun after he graduated from college where he played in regular local poker tournaments which eventually lead to exposure towards the growing popularity of online poker and casino rooms. Jerome now puts all the knowledge he's accrued to fuel his passion for journalism, providing our team with the latest scoops online.

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