Gambling becomes an addicitive problem with living or working close to gambling venues.
Researchers at Swinburne University of Technology have found that people are more likely to gamble if they have gambling venues close to home and work.
"Geographical accessibility could encourage impulsive gambling and make avoidance difficult for those with problems," said the report.
"This aspect of accessibility was important to problem gamblers and supports research suggesting that venues can provide a physical oasis from the outside world and its problems," it added.
Michael Kyrios, who helped prepare the report, said accessibility until now had been measured in limited terms such as "the number of machines per capita per area and that definition lacks an understanding of human factors".
"It is obvious that some areas have similar statistics in terms of the number of machines per capita, but there are real differences in terms of the prevalence of problem gambling versus social gambling that goes on in those areas," the Age quoted him as saying.
A spokeswoman for Gaming Minister Tony Robinson said: "The government considers that regional caps have successfully halted a further concentration of gaming machines in the most vulnerable communities."