Paul Newson, principal at Senet Advisory and IAGR patron, fills us in on the upcoming five-day education programme on gambling regulation, Regulating the Game.
Exclusive interview.- Australia is finally opening its borders after nearly two years of a strict no-entry policy on Covid-19, and it comes just in time for what promises to be a ground-breaking international education programme on gambling regulation.
Senet Advisory‘s five–day Regulating the Game programme kicks off in Sydney on March 7. As Senet Advisor principal and IAGR patron Paul Newson tells us, it’s a long-awaited moment.
“Whilst the enquiries have been going on in Australia, while this frenetic energy has been looking at the gambling sector, we’ve wanted to put on this training,” he says. “There’s never been a greater need for it.”
The inspiration for the course, which features a stellar lineup of speakers from both the regulatory side and the gambling industry, came from the executive development programme run by the International Gaming Institute at the UNLV in Nevada.
“I’ve got to tip the hat to Bo Bernhard at UNLV in Nevada,” Newson says. “That programme’s an intensive ten-day course and it’s really for the industry but when I attended as a regulator in 2018 it really excited me about what the possibility is and the sort of training and education we could bring to Australia because you just cannot access this sort of content, these experts and bringing it all together under one roof.”
“There really are too few people who have a sophisticated understanding of regulatory policy and practice, particularly in the gambling space.”Paul Newson, principal at Senet Advisory.
Regulating the Game only offers 60 places and aims to provide a scenario for deep dialogue, debate and ultimately understanding and sharing of knowledge between industry and regulators.
“There really are too few people who have a sophisticated understanding of regulatory policy and practice, particularly in the gambling space. There’s just too few,” Newson notes. “And there are even fewer that underpin that with sufficient experience, and diverse experience.
“At the same time, there are too few in the industry that understand public policy pressures and the intersection between public policy and politics, and understand how regulators work through public policy developments and their regulatory approach.”
Establishing a conversation between the industry and gambling regulators
Senet has seen a gap in the market – and a need – to bolster regulators’ understanding and the sophistication of their craft and also the gambling industry’s understanding and engagement with it.
Newson aims to get regulators and industry at the table for an open conversation, sharing ideas with a view to improving public policy – although he recognises that taking on board knowledge from the gambling sector takes courage from regulators.
“As a senior bureaucrat, when you are publicly engaging with industry in the gambling sector, you are often exposed to severe criticism, which is unfounded, unfair and unhelpful,” he says.
But he warns: “It’s nonsense not having industry at the table as part of the conversation. That does not inform good policy.”
The programme is certainly one of a kind, and it provides unique networking opportunities. One of the most urgent topics to be discussed is money laundering, which gets its own moderated panel discussion.
“We have assembled some really senior industry leaders to talk about AML and building resilience and hardening industry against financial crime,” Newson says, noting the timeliness of the conversation considering the ongoing enquiries by the financial regulator in Australia.
Check out the full interview with Paul Newson on the Focus Gaming News YouTube channel. Don’t forget to subscribe!