1 Volume 5 Issue 1

Changes in the use of time and the state of health of the Russian population in the 1980s-1990s

Viktor Artemov, Olga Novokhatskaya

This is an attempt to answer a question about how changes in the time use and in health the population relate to each other, what connection exists between duration and character of work and the state of health. The paper draws on the data from two rounds of time budget surveys of: 1) families who kept record of their incomes and expenditures (the RF Goskomstat, 1977-1990 – over 28 thous. families), 2) the rural population of the Novosibirsk region (IEIE SB RAS, 1975-1999, 1400-1100 persons in each). In these rounds the “previous day” approach was used. Used were also the data of questionnaire surveys and official statistics. Last 20 years are a unique period in the Russian modern history reflected in most different forms on all aspects of life, including time use, everyday activity and health of population. The analysis of relationship between time use and health was made at macro levels. Health is presented by life expectancy. Time use is presented by aggregated structure of average time budget, respectively. The assessment by respondents of changes in living conditions and in their own state is seen as a measure of social-psychological well-being of the population. The direction and degree of influence between “time use – state of health” depend on macro and micro life conditions, on socialpsychological well-being of the society and individual, on the “initial’ state of health of the individuals.

Entropy and stability in time use – An empirical investigation based on the German Time Use Survey

Rainer Hufnagel

Flexibility is a tool for preserving the stability of a system. In general, we can expect that the more variant its behaviour, the more stable a system will be. The investigation provides an example of this principle within the discipline of home economics. For a sample of single-person households from Germany’s national Time Use Survey 2001/2002, it can be shown that the stability of activity sequences is greater, the higher the entropy of time use. For this purpose, a Markov model is derived from heuristic considerations. The Markov matrices are estimated and their eigenvectors and eigenvalues then calculated. It is evident that the entropy of an attractor is higher, the lower the norm of the second eigenvalue of the corresponding Markov matrix. The main components of this relationship, namely diversity and stability in time use, turn out to be only weakly associated with the usual socio-economic regressors. Hence, new empirically and theoretically relevant dimensions for socioeconomic research emerge.

Alone at home

Hannu Pääkkönen

Recently there has been much public discussion about children spending long afternoons alone at home. It has been claimed that spending a lot of time alone makes children vulnerable to many kinds of risk behaviour, such as smoking, use of alcohol and drugs, depression and poor school performance. Concerns have also been voiced about children’s unsupervised television watching, playing of computer games and surfing on the Internet. Yet, do we actually know how long the times are that children do spend alone at home and what do they do during that time? The purpose of this paper is to study how much time youngsters in Finland spend alone at home, who are the youngsters who are alone and what do they do when they are alone. The research data are data relating to households from the 1999–2000 Time Use Survey of Statistics Finland. The data cover the shared days of families with children on which all family members aged 10 or over kept a time use diary. The respondents recorded into the diaries at 10-minute accuracy whether they were alone or together with children aged under 10 belonging to the same household, other members of the household, or with other people they knew. Besides the data concerning being alone or together with somebody, the paper also exploits diary information on whether other members of the household were at home at the time in question. The scope of the study is limited to school students aged from 10 to 18. The material contains data on 191 schooldays and 229 days off school.

Time for play – An exploratory analysis of the changing consumption contexts of digital games

David Deal

This study posits that Internet technologies are relaxing the coupling constraints required for the consumption of digital games, resulting in entirely different modes of consumption than has been the norm for the past thirty years. The data collection and analysis found that players of traditional console-based games tend to play for several hours at a time while at a home during evenings and on weekends, the traditional scenario associated with leisure activities. Players of the latest breed of online browser-based digital games, on the other hand, tend to play them for only a few minutes at a time, and at many times throughout the day as a diversionary filler activity between other daily activities. Because they utilize simple and readily available Internet technologies, online browser-based games have facilitated the penetration of digital games into new spaces, including the workplace and school, reflecting a growing trend in modern society

Representative time use data and new harmonised calibration of the American Heritage Time Use Data (AHTUD) 1965-1999

Joachim Merz, Henning Stolze

Representative and reliable individual time use data, in connection with a proper set of socio-economic background variables, are essential elements for the empirical foundation and evaluation of existing and new theories in general and in particular for time use analyses. Within the international project Assessing Time Use Survey Datasets several potentially useful individual US time use heritage datasets have been identified for use in developing an historical series of non-market accounts. In order to evaluate the series of American Heritage Time Use Data (AHTUD) (1965, 1975, 1985, 1992-94, 1998-99) this paper analyses the representativeness of this data when using given weights and provides a new harmonised calibration of the AHTUD for sound time use analyses. Our calibration procedure with its ADJUST program package is theoretically founded on information theory, consistent with a simultaneous weighting including hierarchical data, ensures desired positive weights, and is well-suited and available for any time use data calibration of interest. We present the calibration approach and provide new harmonised weights for all AHTUD surveys based on a substantially driven calibration framework. To illustrate the various application possibilities of a calibration, we finally disentangle demographic vs. time use behavioural changes and developments by re-calibrating all five AHTUD surveys using 1965 population totals as a benchmark.


New developments in time technology – projects, data, computing and services