HETUS: setting the trend for cross-national European time use research

Publication type

Conference Paper


International Association for Time-Use Research Conference


Publication date

October 16, 2002


This poster presentation details current developments in the Harmonised European Time Use Surveys project (HETUS). EUROSTAT set up the HETUS project in the early 1990s to promote an increase in time diary research and to develop standards to allow for more cross-national comparative research. Between 1996 and 1997, 20 countries carried out pilot studies. Between 1999 and 2002, 15 countries have carried out time use studies following (to varying degrees) the HETUS questionnaire and coding guidelines, and a further 7 countries plan or hope to conduct HETUS studies in the near future. All HETUS studies draw national samples, and most participating countries collected data over a whole year. The diaries cover between 1 and 3 days selected by stratified random sampling to allow for an equal sampling of week days and of weekend days. Now as data becomes available, the challenge of creating useful tables and data files that allow for meaningful cross-national research arises. This presentation details the design of the static tables that will appear on the EUROSTAT web site, and proposals under consideration for a web-based customised table producer, and for the data files. While the post-collection/coding harmonisation techniques already developed from the Multinational Time Use Study have been used to address variations in the coding of main activities between the member states, new challenges arise from harmonising location of activity, who else is present, and combined secondary and primary activities. The poster presentation details the current solutions proposed to address these challenges, and also outlines future aims of the HETUS project.



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