Johnson, Johnnie E.V. and Bruce, Alistair C.
An empirical study of the impact of complexity on participation in horserace betting
Journal of Gambling Studies, 13, (2), . (doi:10.1023/A:1024903418798).
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The aim of the research reported in this paper was to explore empirically whether levels of participation in horserace betting are affected by the complexity of the betting task. The study employed a systematic random sample of 1161 betting decisions made in UK offcourse betting offices during 1987. The research was conducted in a naturalistic setting where it was possible to grade complexity and to measure levels of participation. Complexity was defined in terms of both the number of alternatives in the decision-maker's choice set (number of horses in a race) and the complexity of the attributes set for each horserace (handicap vs. non-handicap races). Results indicated that bettors are not inhibited by alternative-based complexity, but may be inhibited to some extent by attribute-defined complexity.
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