Time-Use Survey

National Statistical Organisation has released the second edition of the ‘Time Use Survey’ recently.

Time-Use Survey


National Statistical Office (NSO) conducted the first Time Use Survey in India during January – December 2019. The survey measures the participation rate and time spent on paid activities, care activities, unpaid activities, etc.

What is ‘Time Use Survey (TUS)’?

  • Time Use Survey (TUS) provides a framework for measuring time dispositions by the population on different activities.
  • It is an important source of information about the activities that are performed by the population and the time duration for which such activities are performed.
  • One distinguishing feature of Time Use Survey from other household surveys is that it can capture time disposition on different aspects of human activities, be it paid, unpaid or other activities with such details which is not possible in other surveys.


  • The primary objective of Time Use Survey (TUS) is to measure participation of men and women in paid and unpaid activities.
  • TUS is an important source of information on the time spent in unpaid caregiving activities, volunteer work, unpaid domestic service producing activities of the household members.
  • It also provides information on time spent on learning, socialising, leisure activities, self-care activities, etc., by the household members.

Findings of the survey 

  • As per the study, 57.3 per cent males were engaged in employment and related activities while the proportion was 18.4 per cent for females in the country.
  • In the rural areas, the proportion of women engaged in employment and related activities was higher at 19.2 per cent compared to 16.7 per cent in cities. The proportion of males above the age of six years engaged in gainful employment or related activities was higher in cities at 59.8 per cent in cities compared 56.1 per cent in rural areas. The study showed that all persons above the age of six years who participated in the survey, were engaged in self-care and maintenance.
  • Overall 53.2 per cent of participants in the survey were engaged in unpaid domestic services for household members. The proportion of females in the category was higher at 81.2 per cent compared to 26.1 per cent for males. The proportion of females engaged in unpaid domestic services for household members in rural areas was higher at 82.1 per cent compared to 79.2 per cent in cities. The proportion of males engaged in unpaid domestic services for household members in villages too was higher at 27.7 per cent compared to 22.6 per cent in cities. Overall, the percentage of persons engaged in unpaid domestic services for household members in villages was also higher at 54.6 per cent compared to 50.1 per cent.
  • The TUS also showed that the proportion of people who were engaged in production of goods for own final use was 17.1 per cent in the country. The proportion of such males was 14.3 per cent while it was 20 per cent for women in the country.
  • As much as 20.7 per cent people were engaged in unpaid caregiving services for household members in the country. The proportion of such men was 14 per cent while it was 27.6 per cent in case of women.
  • The study also showed that just 2.4 per cent of people opted for unpaid volunteer, trainee and other unpaid work.
  • As much as 91.3 per cent people went for socialising and communication, community participation and religious practice. The proportion of people who opted for culture, leisure, mass-media and sports practices was 86.9 per cent in the country
  • It also showed that people utilise 50.4 per cent of total time of 1440 minutes in a day on self-care and maintenance followed by 11.4 per cent on employment and related activities.

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