Mapping time use research. A diagnosis of the impact of different methods of time use registration sustained by data analysis.

Project Details


In contrast to money, time is believed to be one of the most democratic goods: everyone gets just as much time and time can not be accumulated. Time is a central dimension in our lives and in Western society is has developped to be a very valuable resource. The study of time use offers a clear insight into people's daily activities and allows to get a clear view on social phenomena and evolutions. Nevertheless, a coherent view on how people currently spend their time is lacking. Studies for time use patterns in our society come to quite different results, despite the fact that they were conducted during the same period. One study concludes we work 40 hours per week, while another argues we work considerably less. One study makes us worry about the time we spend with our children, while other studies claim that there is no reason to worry... How people spend their time can be studied in a number of different ways. Generally, time use is measured through direct observation, the survey method, the random event method (with beeper and telephone) or the diary method.
Although ideally direct observation should be used to measure time use (Robinson 1977; Juster 1985; Kalfs 1993), in practice studies principally rely on the survey method and the diary method for a variety of reasons (Kalfs 1993). Time use is measured through various methods, but currently we lack a good understanding of the effects and distortions these methods produce. The central focus of this fundamentally methodological project is: "What are the particular effects of the methods used to measure people's time use?". The aim of this research project is to present a general overview of various methods and their effects on time use measurement. This will allow for a fundamental understanding of the differences in results between time use studies. Differences will not only be discerned, but will equally be diagnosed by means of data analysis. The results of this project are both nationally and internationally relevant.
Effective start/end date1/10/0930/09/11


  • Time Managment
  • Sociology Of Culture
  • Education And Citizenship
  • Time Use And Time Budget
  • Transfer Of Values
  • Sociology Of Teaching
  • Youth Culture
  • Political Culture
  • Cultural Change

Flemish discipline codes 2018-2023

  • Sociology and anthropology


Explore the research topics touched on by this project. These labels are generated based on the underlying awards/grants. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • TUO Workshop

    Ignace Glorieux (Keynote speaker)

    17 Sep 201019 Sep 2010

    Activity: Talk or presentationTalk or presentation at a workshop/seminar

  • IATUR Paris

    Ignace Glorieux (Keynote speaker)

    7 Jul 20109 Jul 2010

    Activity: Talk or presentationTalk or presentation at a conference

  • TUO Workshop

    Ignace Glorieux (Keynote speaker)

    17 Mar 201019 Mar 2010

    Activity: Talk or presentationTalk or presentation at a workshop/seminar