Time-use survey is an emerging area of social enquiry, which offers a unique tool for exploring a wide range of policy concerns including social change, division of labour, allocation of time for household work, the estimation of the value of household production, transportation, leisure and recreation, pension plans, and health-care programmes, among others. Scientific classification of activities for time use statistics can simplify investigation process, facilitate data processing and speed data transfer.
In order to measure how much time people spend on doing various productive activities in China, and to improve methodology on women's contribution to national economic and social development, the National Bureau of Statistics of China conducted time-use survey in May 2008 in 10 selected provinces. The sample consisted of 37142 interviewees aged 15 to 74, among which with 19621 urban residents and 17521 rural residents, 18215 men and 18927 women.
Based on the statistical data of Chinese time-use survey, and also the trial International Classification of Activities for Time Use Statistics (ICATUS) undertaken by the United Nations Statistics Division, this paper established Chinese classification of activities for time-use statistics, which includes 9 categories, 61 groups and 119 classes. 9 categories were named formal employment, household primary work, household manufacture and construction work, household service, household domestic work, caring for families and volunteer activity, study, social life and leisure time, and personal activity. Paid work/SNA work included 4 categories, 25 groups and 33 classes; unpaid work/non-SNA work included 2 categories, 15 groups and 31 classes; and 3 categories, 21 groups and 55 classes belong to non-productive activities. The classification conformed to China's national conditions, but also compatible with other countries. It would be the foundation of Chinese national classification of activities for time-use statistics.
United Nations (2005). Guide to Producing Statistics on Time Use: Measuring Paid and Unpaid Work. New York
National Bureau of Statistics of China (2008). Main Results of Time Use Survey in 2008. Beijing
National Bureau of Statistics of China (2010). Time Use Patterns in China. Beijing
Keywords: Time use statistics; Classification; China
Biography: Dr. Fengdan Shi is an associate researcher in Research Institute of Statistical Sciences, National Bureau of Statistics of China. She has been active in research in the field of energy economics for several years. Her current research focus on social statistics mainly, including establishing statistical classification and constructing statistical indicator system to measure people's living conditions.