Few women play poker, and while many gambling venues, both physical locations and online, are looking for ways to increase the low percentage of female gamblers, men still dominate the sector. Despite the interest of casinos to draw more women to poker, an actual strategy to increase interest and participation in poker tournaments for women has not improved turnout. This is the first phase of an exploratory study to examine industry barriers for women in poker. Interviews were used to determine major categories of inexperienced (beginner) and experienced (seasoned) female players and poker dealers to derive the avenues to entry into the live poker room, experiences once playing in the poker room, and opportunities to grow the market. This study reveals key findings that are not only challenges in the retention of female poker players, but are also barriers to entry in learning the game of poker in a live environment which has little coverage in previous academic studies. This initial research lays the foundation for a more robust secondary study that will provide implications for growth to this key segment of the $40 billion-dollar industry.
Women in poker, gender equity, women gambling, casino gaming