Matthew Tom, PhD is an Associate in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and a Research Data Analyst at the Division on Addiction, Cambridge Health Alliance, a Harvard Medical School teaching hospital. Dr. Tom received his PhD in statistics from Cornell University in 2003. After graduating, Dr. Tom taught mathematics and statistics at The University of Montana in Missoula and then at Emmanuel College.

At the Division on Addiction, Dr. Tom is working on a Bwin.Party Digital Entertainment-funded study to predict the behavioral patterns of problematic gamblers.

Dr. Tom is interested in gambling behavior, both from the points of view of economics and psychology. His primary research project is studying the strategies and playing tendencies of online poker players, particularly those who have problems with gambling. His plan is to use descriptive statistics derived from players’ actions at the virtual poker tables to identify players who are at risk of developing problems with gambling in the future.

Current Projects

Dissemination, Training, & Strategic Consulting for Responsible Online Gaming & Gambling Activities

The Entain-Division on Addiction Internet Gambling Research Collaborative

Selected Publications


Edson, T. C., Tom, M. A., & LaPlante, D. A. (2021). Examining player engagement with and attitudes toward a gambling play management system. Journal of Gambling Studies.

Edson, T. C., Tom, M. A., Philander, K. S., Louderback, E. R., & LaPlante, D. A. (2021). A large-scale prospective study of big wins and their relationship with future financial and time involvement in actual Daily Fantasy Sports contests. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors (ahead of print).

Nelson, S. E., Edson, T. C., Louderback, E. R., Tom, M. A., Grossman, A., & LaPlante, D. A. (2021). Changes to the playing field: A contemporary study of actual European online sports betting. Journal of Behavioral Addictions (ahead of print).


Ching, F. Y., Wiley, R. C., Tom, M. A., Wong, R. H. Y., Shaffer, H. J., & Chan, E. M. L. (2020). A brief comment about sample size and response rates for clinical research: A multi-site case example. International Journal of Mental Health & Addiction, 18(5), 1335-1345.

Tom, M. A., Williams, P. M., Edson, T. C., & LaPlante, D. A. (2020). Understanding the relation between social behaviors and daily fantasy sports risk behavior. Journal of Gambling Studies, 36(3), 921-935.

Wiley, R. C., Tom, M. A., Edson, T. C., & LaPlante, D. A. (2020). Behavioral markers of risky daily fantasy sports play. Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 44(4), 356-371.


Nelson, S. E., Edson, T. C., Singh, P., Tom, M., Martin, R. J., LaPlante, D. A., Gray, H. M., & Shaffer, H. J. (2019). Patterns of daily fantasy sport play: Tackling the issues. Journal of Gambling Studies, 35(1), 181-204.


Nelson, S. E., LaPlante, D. A., Gray, H. M., Tom, M. A., Kleschinsky, J. H., & Shaffer, H. J. (2018). Already at the table: Patterns of play and gambling involvement prior to gambling expansion. Journal of Gambling Studies, 34(1), 275–295.

Shaffer, H. J., Tom, M. A., Wiley, R. C., Wong, M. F. Y., Chan, E. M. L., Cheng, G. L. F., Lo, C. K. M., Ma, E. K. Y., Wong, R. H. Y., & Lee, M. (2018). Using the Syndrome Model of Addiction: A preliminary consideration of psychological states and traits. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 16(6), 1373-1393.


Shaffer, H. J., Tom, M. A., & Braverman, J. (2017). When criticizing others it is helpful to focus on actual behavior: A comment about Auer and Griffiths. Journal of Gambling Studies, 33(4), 1035-1037.


Tom, M. A., & Shaffer, H. J. (2016). Devil in the details: A critical review of “theoretical loss”. Journal of Gambling Studies, 32(3), 865-875.


Braverman, J., Tom, M. & Shaffer, H. J. (2015). Tilting at windmills: A comment on Auer and Griffiths. Journal of Gambling Studies, 31(2), 359-366.

Gray, H. M., Tom, M. A., LaPlante, D. A., & Shaffer, H. J. (2015). Using opinions and knowledge to identify natural groups of gambling employees. Journal of Gambling Studies, 31(4), 1753–1766.


Braverman, J., Tom, M. A., & Shaffer, H. J. (2014). Accuracy of self-reported versus actual online gambling wins and losses. Psychological Assessment, 26(3), 865-877. doi:10.1037/a0036428

Tom, M. A., LaPlante, D. A., & Shaffer, H. J. (2014). Does Pereto rule Internet gambling? Problems among the “Vital Few” & “Trivial Many”. Journal of Gambling Business & Economics, 8(1), 73-100.