Addiction expert hired by Dutch gaming regulator

addiction expert

The Dutch gambling regulator Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) has hired Gert-Jan Meerkerk to join its academic research team. Addiction expert Meerkerk will be working alongside Joost Poort, Johan Wolswinkel, and Karin van Wingerde in his new role. The KSA researchers are tasked with preventing gambling addiction, assisting regulation, and fighting against gambling harm.

Meerkerk has been affiliated with the Institute for Research into Lifestyles and Addiction for over 25 years. He is an addiction expert who has conducted multiple studies into them in these 25 years, including social media, smartphone, alcohol, and gambling addictions.

Changes to the Dutch market

This appointment comes just in time for the introduction of the Remote Gambling Act. Due to come into effect on March 1, 2021, it is expected to have a market launch in September of the same year. It will propose to create guidelines where players must set a maximum credit limit for their account. There will also be limits for bonuses players can claim, and limits on advertising over a specific period.

Meerkerk believes that the introduction of this Act will mean that there is more supply within the Dutch market, but stresses that addiction prevention will need to be properly addressed. Gambling addictions are not a massive problem in the Netherlands for now, and things must stay this way. Meerkerk is in favour of the changes to the law this will bring, saying that a legal and well-regulated market is key in keeping customers safe.