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Dr Keis Ohtsuka

BA (Sophia), MA (Sophia), PhD (Illinois)

Senior Lecturer

Keis is a Senior Lecturer in psychology at Victoria University and an Honorary Research Fellow in the China Center for Lottery Studies at Peking University.

Keis is a psychologist studying gambling behaviour and cognition with a special interest in culture and gambling, erroneous gambling-related cognitions and beliefs, superstition, and the understanding of luck, chance and winning probabilities. Since 1995, Keis has been an active member of the National Association for Gambling Studies (Australia), which he served as NAGS Secretary from 2008 to 2012.

Keis is the Editor in Chief of Asian Journal of Gambling Issues and Public Health, the first English language gambling research journal with an Asia Pacific focus. He also sits in the editorial review boards of the International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, International Gambling Studies, and Gambling Research and a member of the Academic Committee in the Asia Pacific Association for Gambling Studies.

Keis received his BA and MA (Psychology) from Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan, where he was born. He received his PhD (Educational Psychology) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in the United States. Before joining Victoria University, he worked as a post-graduate research fellow in the University of Western Australia.

Recent publications

Refereed journal articles

Ohtsuka, K. (2013). Views on luck and winning, self-control, and gaming service expectations of culturally and linguistically diverse Australian poker machine gamblers. Asian Journal of Gambling Issues and Public Health, 3(1), 9.

Chan, C. C., & Ohtsuka, K. (2013). The clinical and social construction of the Paichais of Macau. Asian Journal of Gambling Issues and Public Health, 3(1), 6.

Ohtsuka, K., & Chan, C. C. (2010). Donning red underwear to play mahjong: Superstitious beliefs and problem gambling among Chinese mahjong players in Macau.  Gambling Research, 22, 18-33.

Ohtsuka, K., & Ohtsuka, T. (2010). Vietnamese Australian gamblers’ views on luck and winning: Universal versus culture-specific schemas. Asian Journal of Gambling Issues and Public Health, 1, 34-46.

Ohtsuka, K., & Chan, C. C. (2009). Desperate housewives: An analysis of the characterisations of female gamblers portrayed in gambling movies in Hong KongInternational Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 7, 229-238. 

Book chapters (refereed)

R. Ibrahim, R. Z. A., & Ohtsuka, K. (2013). Worker Wellbeing in Malaysia: Prediction of wellbeing from psychosocial work environment, organizational justice and work family conflict. In Y. Kashima, E. S. Kashima, & R. Beaston (Eds.), Steering cultural dynamics: Selected papers from the 2010 Congress of the International Association for cross-cultural psychology (pp. 182 - 189). Melbourne, Australia: International Association for Cross-Cultural Psychology.

Moore, S., & Ohtsuka, K. (2002). Gambling activities of young Australians: Developing a model of behaviour. In J. J. Marotta, J. A. Cornelius, & W. R. Eadington (Eds.), The downside: Problem & pathological gambling (pp. 429 – 453). Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming, University of Nevada, Reno.

Satyen, L., & Ohtsuka, K. (2001). Strategies to develop divided attention skills through video game training. In D. Harris (Ed.), Engineering psychology and cognitive ergonomics (Vol. 6) (pp. 191-199). Aldershot, UK: Ashgate.

Brewer, W. F., & Ohtsuka, K. (1988). Story structure and reader affect in American and Hungarian short stories. In C. Martindale (Ed.), Psychological approaches to the study of literary narratives (pp. 133-158). Hamburg: Buske.

Martindale, C., Brewer, W. F., Helson, R., Rosenberg, S., Simonton, D. K., Keeley, A., Leigh, J., & Ohtsuka, K. (1988). Structure, theme, style, and reader response in Hungarian and American short stories. In C. Martindale (Ed.), Psychological approaches to the study of literary narratives (pp. 267-289). Hamburg: Buske.

Conference publications

Chan, C. C., Ohtsuka, K., & Chan, K. I. (2012). Pathways to recreational gambling and problem gambling: A summary of eight studies. Conference Proceedings of the 2012 International Conference on Public Welfare and Gaming Industry 2012, 15-16/11/2012 Beijing, China (pp. 54-63).

Ohtsuka, K., & Carroll, H. R. (2012). An exploratory investigation on validity and reliability of an Illusion of Control Beliefs Questionnaire. Conference Proceedings of the 2012 International Conference on Public Welfare and Gaming Industry 2012, 15-16/11/2012 Beijing, China (pp. 64-71).

Ohtsuka, K., & Chan, C. C. (2011). Gambling movies and culture: How much gambling movies tell us about the lives and struggles of the people of Hong Kong. Conference Proceedings of the 2011 International Conference on Public Welfare and Gaming Industry 2011, Beijing, China (pp. 305-314).

Chan, C. C., & Ohtsuka, K. (2011). Pathways development of social gamblers and pathological gamblers: A summary of five qualitative studies. Conference Proceedings of the 2011 International Conference on Public Welfare and Gaming Industry 2011, Beijing, China (pp. 191-200).

Ohtsuka, K., & O’Mahony, B. (2010). Australian gaming workers' views on effective harm minimisation: a cultural competency approach. Conference Proceedings of the International Conference on Public Welfare and Gaming Industry 2010, Beijing, China (pp. 202-216).

Conference presentations

Ohtsuka, K., & Carroll, H. R. (2012, November). An exploratory investigation on validity and reliability of an Illusion of Control Beliefs Questionnaire. Paper presented at the 22nd Annual Conference of the National Association for Gambling Studies (Australia), Inc., Launceston, Tasmania, Australia. 22 November 2012.

Chan, C. Y., Ohtsuka, K.*, Hui, H. K., Cheung, M. L., & Chan, C. C. (2012, November).  Problem gambling and emotional vulnerability among female mahjong gamblers in Hong Kong. Paper presented at the 22nd Annual Conference of the National Association for Gambling Studies (Australia), Inc. , Launceston, Tasmania, Australia.  22 November 2012. *Presenting author.

Ohtsuka, K. (2010, September). Cultural differences in gaming patrons’ behaviour, and provision of harm minimisation: Views from Electronic Gaming Machine (EGM) venue employees in Australia. Paper presented at the 8th European Conference on Gambling Studies and Policy Issues, Vienna, Austria. 14-17 September 2010.

Ohtsuka, K. (2010, July). Cultural influences in gambling cognition – is the concept of luck and winning universal or culture-specific?  In S. M. Moore (Chair), Gambling: Examining the influence of culture and age on behavior.  IAAP Division 6 Clinical & Community Psychology Symposium conducted at the 27th International Congress of Applied Psychology, 11-16 July, Melbourne, Australia.

Ohtsuka, K. (2010, June). Vietnamese Australian Electronic Gaming Machine (EGM) gamblers’ views on luck, winning and self-control: Universal and cultural-specific schemas. Paper presented at the Diversity in Health 2010 Conference, Melbourne, Australia. 7 June 2010.

View a full list of Keis' publications.

Teaching responsibilities

Keis teaches Organisational Psychology, Fieldwork, Risk-taking and Gambling Behaviour, Research Methods.

Unit coordination

Postgraduate research students and fellows

Completions

4 PhD (as Principal Supervisor), 1 DBA (as co-supervisor) and 6 Honours students.

Current supervision

Keis is currently supervising 1 Master of Applied Psychology (Community Psychology) student, 3 Honours (Psychology) and 3 Graduate Diploma (Psychology) students.

Research grants

Principal investigator

Ohtsuka, K. (1993). Australian Research Council Small Grants Scheme, University of Western Australia for the project, The effects of text genres and reader strategy on mental models of text. $13,000.

Ohtsuka, K. (1998).  Department of Psychology Special Research Grant, Victoria University for the project, Cultural influences on gambling attitudes among Vietnamese-Australian gamblers. $3,500.

Ohtsuka, K. (1994). University Research Seeding Grant, Victoria University for the project, How do readers understand instructions? Integration of procedures into a mental model. $4,500.

Ohtsuka, K. (1992). Department Research Grant. School of Psychology, The University of Western Australia for the project, Text genres and reader strategy on mental models. $5,359.

Co-principal investigator

Moore, S. M., & Ohtsuka, K. (1996).  Australian Research Council Small Grants Scheme, Victoria University for the project, Gambling beliefs and behaviours among young Australians.  $13,700. 

Kirsner, K., & Ohtsuka, K. (1994).  Australian Research Council Small Grants Scheme, University of Western Australia for the project, The role of embedded constituents in kanji.  $9,993.

Feldman, S., Radermacher, H., Anderson, C., & Ohtsuka, K. (2012-2014). A qualitative investigation of the experiences, attitudes and beliefs about gambling, and problem gambling help services, of people from culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds.  Department of Justice, Government of Victoria, Australia. $140,000

O’Mahony, B., & Ohtsuka, K. (2007).  A study of self-control across difference CALD communities: The development of culturally competent harm minimisation framework for promoting responsible gambling.  Grants System for Gambling Research 2006 Pilot, Department of Justice, Office of Gaming and Racing, Government of Victoria, $91,274.

Morda, R., Sonn, C. C., & Ohtsuka, K. (2005). Enhancing connectedness: A pathway for improving retention of first year psychology students. Transition Grant, Victoria University, 2005. $7,141.

Mentor investigator

Natoli, R. (2012). Identifying Financial Literacy Risk Profiles in the CALD Community – A Case Study of the Vietnamese Community. Research Development Grant, Victoria University, $28,230.

Professional memberships

  • Australian Psychological Society, Member, since 1995.
  • National Association for Gambling Studies (NAGS), Secretary, 2008-2012; Member, since 1994.
  • International Association of Applied Psychology, Member, since 2010.
  • World Lottery Study Association (WLSA)/World Gaming Study Association (WGSA), Foundation member, Board of Directors, since 2009.
  • Asia Pacific Association for Gambling Studies, Member of Academic Committee, since 2011.
  • Addiction Research Institute, Member of the Board of Directors, 2000-2004.
  • Diversity in Health 2010 Conference, Melbourne.  Member, Conference Organising Sub-committee, 2009-2010
  • National Association for Gambling Studies (NAGS) Annual Conference, Melbourne. Conference Organising Committee, 2011.

Appearances in the media

Dr Keis Ohtsuka is a commentator on gambling and culture, luck and wellbeing. Follow him on Twitter @KeisOhtsuka.

Recent media appearances are:

Sheilds, J. (Producer) & Buck, R. (Presenter).  (2013, 5 July) Radio National Life Matters - Friday talkback: Luck, what is it and why do we believe in it?  Sydney: Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).  

Lund, M., & Cornish, L. (2012, 11 December). Schedules fixed around calendar combination of lucky dozen. Courier Mail.

Filali, F. (Producer) & Calixto, J. (Researcher). (2012, 11 September).  Insight - “Betting on Asia.” Sydney: Special Broadcasting Service (SBS) Australia.  

华裔移民的“失乐园” [Chinese immigrants’ “lost paradise.”]  (2010, 30 October).  

Ma, M. (2010, 24 October). “赌场其实不吃人”最忌一念之“贪” [Casinos do not prey on people, while the idea of greed does.] 澳洲新快网 [Australian New Express Daily].  

Areas of expertise

  • Cultural competency
  • Culture and gambling
  • Erroneous gambling-related cognitions/beliefs
  • Luck and winning
  • Psychology of gambling
  • Superstitions in gambling

Contact details

+61 3 9919 5098