1 Volume 16 Issue 1

What is unpaid female labour worth? Evidence from the Time Use Surveys of Iran in 2008 and 2009

Mahmood Messkoub, Nader Mehri, Mahmood Ghazi-Tabatabai

We have used the urban Time Use Surveys of Iran (TUSI) of 2008 and 2009, several Iranian censuses and our own national survey of the wages of care workers and private tutors to provide the first national estimates of the monetary value of unpaid domestic work of married urban housewives. TUSI covered only urban areas. Urban married housewives carried out most of the care work and home education of children. Adopting a market-based approach, we estimate this unpaid work to be worth US$26 billion in 2008 and US$29 billion in 2009 comprising 8.6% of non-oil GDP in both years. These figures are underestimates because rural women, non-housewife urban women and urban unmarried women are not included in our study. Such unrecorded contributions to national output have important social policy implications because various social policy measures and especially social insurance policies do not cover married housewives in their own right but as dependents of their husbands. Providing a monetary estimate of their unpaid work makes their contribution to the economy visible that should lead to the provision of social insurance against basic contingencies of life such as has health problems, poverty, disabilities and support in old age.


Data Quality in Web and App Diaries: A Person-Level Comparison

The time-use diary is a complex and burdensome data collection instrument. This can negatively affect data quality, leading to less detailed and/or inaccurate activity reporting as the surveyed time period unfolds. However, it can also be argued that data quality may actually improve over time as respondents become more familiar with the diary instrument format and more interested in the diary task. These competing hypotheses have only been partially tested on data from paper and telephone-administered diaries, which are traditionally used for large-scale data collection. Less is known about self-administered modes that make use of new technologies, despite their increasing popularity among researchers. This research note rectifies this omission by comparing diary quality in self-administered web and app diaries, drawing on data from the Millennium Cohort Study. We construct a person-level data quality typology, using information on missing data, episode changes, and reporting of key daily activity domains. Results show significant mode differences on person-level data quality, after controlling for characteristics known to influence diary mode selection and data quality. App diarists were more likely to return two diaries of inconsistent quality. Both respondent fatigue and improvement of completion over time appear more common among app diarists.


Gender differences in consumption of leisure in Korea: Revisiting the concept of ‘cultural voraciousness’

Seung-Eun Cha

This study explores gender differences in leisure activity, applying the concept of “cultural voraciousness”, using data from the 2014 Korean Time Use Survey. Drawing on 26,972 diaries kept by adults aged 35-64 years, we measured two aspects of leisure activity: 1) the total daily minutes spent on outdoor leisure, and 2) the sequential complexity index capturing cultural voraciousness (the variety and distribution of leisure activity) within a day. Results showed that Korean men consumed more leisure than women in terms of daily minutes spent on leisure and had more complexity in their leisure activities. The gender gap in leisure time and the complexity score remained large even in later life, when leisure time increased overall, compared with earlier life stages. Another important finding is that socioeconomic factors appear crucial in shaping the leisure consumption of men and women, but the impact of those factors on leisure differed according to gender. Men and women's leisure complexity was associated with current household income. Education was as a significant factor associated with women's leisure time and complexity for all age groups of women.


Rethinking the workweek: Results from a longitudinal time-use study of a 30-hour workweek experiment

Francisca Mullens, Julie Verbeylen, Ignace Glorieux

In 2019, Femma vzw, a Belgian women’s organisation, as an experiment, implemented a 30-hour workweek within the organisation. For a period of 12 months, all full-time employees switched from a 36-hour workweek to a 30-hour workweek. During this experiment, a longitudinal time-use study into the impact of the working time reduction on the working life and private life of these employees was carried out. The study included five waves of data collection before, during and after the experiment over a period of two and a half years. Each wave consisted of an online 7-day time use diary, a pre-diary questionnaire and a post-diary questionnaire. This research report discusses the first general findings of the study, using the first four waves. Some key findings are: the employees had clear wishes and expectations about what they wanted to do with their extra time at the start of the 30-hour workweek. Above all, the wish for more personal time was high. Most employees took this extra time as one additional non-working day per week, namely Wednesday or Friday. The extra free hours mostly were spent on household work, care and personal care, although this was not exactly what they wished for. However, employees did experience less household stress, less leisure time pressure and a better work-life balance.


Who Works When? The Case of South Korea

Yoo-Jean Song, Yun-Suk Lee

Although Korea’s long working hours are well-known, the work schedules of individuals with different socioeconomic characteristics have not been studied. This paper examines the timing of paid work and socioeconomic characteristics associated with work schedules in Korea. Using data from the Korean Time Use Survey (KTUS) 2014 and based on the analysis of employed people aged from 19 to 64, we found that a higher proportion of men work every hour of the day as compared to women. Women tend to start work late in the day, but a similar proportion of women and men work in the afternoon and evening. About 5 % work during non-standard hours, such as in the evening, at night, and in the early morning, and this percentage increases on the weekends. As in previous literature, divorced men and women or single women tend to work more during non-standard hours during weekdays and weekends. Both occupation and employment status are related to working non-standard hours, showing that women in service sectors and working as an unpaid employee at the family business, and men working in manual labor are more likely than people in other occupations to work during non-standard hours or weekends.