1 Volume 11 Issue 1

Social status differentiation of leisure activities variation over the weekend – Approaching the voraciousness thesis by a sequence complexity measure

Georgios Papastefanou, Jonathan Gruhler

Sullivan and Katz-Gerro (2007) as well as Katz-Gerro and Sullivan (2010) argues that engaging in a variety of leisure activities with high frequency is a distinct feature of omnivorous cultural consumption. And like omnivorousness it bears a status-distinctive characteristic. The authors reported, that high status social categories show a more voracious leisure time-use pattern, i.e. engage in a greater number of activities with higher frequency over the period of one week. In this paper we are examining the voraciousness thesis by utilizing a newly proposed measure of activities variety, namely the sequence complexity index, which is developed by Gabadinho et al., 2011. Using data from German Time Use Survey (2000/2001) we focus on cultural leisure activities reported for the weekend. Our results show that complexity as a measure of time-related variety captures significant social differentiation of leisure activities over the weekend. But our complexity-based findings do not support that, that voraciousness understood as high levels of time used for varied leisure activities is also significant at weekend. Beyond that the results support the assumption, that there is social structural framing of a Saturday, where gender, age and marital statues effects on leisure variation come into effect.

Has the digital divide been reversed? – Evidence from five EU countries

Smaranda Pantea, Bertin Martens

This paper examines whether there is a digital divide in the use of the internet in general and of specific websites (leisure, improving human capital and obtaining goods and services). It uses a unique dataset which covers the entire clickstream of almost 20,000 internet users in the five largest EU economies during 2011. Our main finding is that, for those who have access to the Internet, the income-based digital divide in internet use at home has been reversed. Low-income internet users spend more time on the internet at home than high-income users on all types of websites. There is some evidence of an education-based digital divide in the use of human capital and goods & services websites. Tertiary education has a negative effect on time spent on leisure websites and a positive effect on time spent on human capital and goods & services websites. Using quantile regressions, we find that the negative effect of income and the positive effect of education for human capital and goods & services websites hold for the entire conditional distribution of these online activities. Moreover, these effects are stronger for more intensive internet users. We discuss several possible explanations for these results.

Explaining sleep time – Hungarian evidences

Benedek Kovács, Lajos Bálint

We spend about one-third of our life sleeping, which is essential for our physical and mental health. Research verified that both too much and too little sleep is associated with poor health, while the “golden mean” seems to be ideal. In general, sleep time forms a U-shaped curve over the life span. In our busy lifestyle, we can observe the conversion of sleep time to waking activities. In addition, some dimensions of social inequality may influence sleeping habits. At the same time, sleeping has a relation with families’ lifecycles, with working time, and with income, as well. In this paper we focus on the relationship between sleep and work-related time. Studies of sleep time are based on two types of theoretical traditions, one of which relies on rational choice theory, while the other emphasizes the role of the social structural elements. We argue that the two theoretical frameworks do not contradict. Our results, that based on the Hungarian Time Use Survey, reveal that rational calculation is determinant, but we also found evidences of structural effects.Our main finding is that sleep time is strongly linked to the degree of integration in the labour market.

Unraveling the mystery of sleep duration dynamics – Sleep in the objective and subjective lives of employed men and women

William Michelson

This paper addresses the place of sleep duration - objectively and subjectively - in the lives of employed men and women in Canada, based on data in Statistics Canada's 2010 General Social Survey no. 24, with an emphasis on time use. It addresses the mystery of how public opinion reflects a view that night-time sleep has declined in duration during a decade when surveys show that it has increased. A further mystery is why women in particular feel sleep deprived when comparable surveys show greater durations for women over men. Analyses were carried out on 10,201 men and women between the ages of 25-64, to eliminate the special situations of youth and the elderly on free time and sleep in recent decades. Analyses of the 6,608 employed persons in this age range showed that employed women spend less mean time than employed men in paid employment, more time in domestic work, equal time with their partners in child care, and more time asleep than their partners. But their reference group is to non-employed women who sleep significantly longer, not to men's sleep durations, and multitasking plausibly accounts for stress generally imputed primarily to sleeplessness for this cohort. Data indicate that both the amount and content of multi-tasking impact directly on feelings of time crunch.

Modular Online Time Use Survey (MOTUS) – Translating an existing method in the 21st century

Theun Pieter van Tienoven, Sarah Daniels, Djiwo Weenas, Jef Deyaert, Sarah Van den Bogaert, Sven Rymenants

Time-use surveys are internationally highly valued methods for capturing daily behaviour. Their combination of questionnaires and paper-and-pencil time-diaries (among others in Europe) or telephone interview yesterdaymethod (in USA) through which respondents (re)construct their daily activities (i.e. what and when) together with contextual information (i.e. with whom and where) is both its strength as well as its weakness. This weakness stems from the high (personnel) costs involved in conducting time-use surveys, costs that can largely be reduced by switching to an online method. However, recent experimenting with online time-use surveys a) jeopardizes the hard work of harmonizing international time-use surveys and b) never truly copied or implemented the methodology of the paper-and-pencil time diaries let alone added additional features that improve the ‘old’ method. After having received a substantial grant we took the challenge to translate this existing method to an online method a) without loosing its strengths, b) with adding additional features that enrich the data even more, and c) with automated processes that reduce personnel and processing costs. In this contribution we a) reveal our method and its modular design and automated processes, b) provide preliminary results of the quality and response of the population pilot study (ninvited≈40,000), c) evaluate our effort, d) challenge others to comment and collaborate on our methodology in order to end up with a (new) standardized methodology for online diary studies that allows cross-national comparisons, and e) reflect on future possibilities and initiatives that serve the imminent online diary methodology.


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