India Time Use Survey

  • India’s first Pan India time use survey was released by the Ministry of Statistics and Programme.

What are time use surveys?

  • A time use survey measures the amount of time people spend doing various activities, such as paid work, childcare, volunteering, and socialising.
  • The primary objective of a 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. The findings of these surveys are deemed to be helpful in drafting policies on poverty, gender equity and human development.
  • This is the first such pan India survey conducted.
  • It is a sample survey conducted between January and December 2019 in which 1.39 lakh households across the country and 4.47 lakh persons over the age of 6 were enumerated.
  • What are the major findings in the report?

    • The data, point to the fact that while the large chunk of paid work is done by men, unpaid work is largely done by women.
    • The participation rate of men in paid employment —

    ○which includes jobs, farming, fishing, mining amongst other economic activities — is high at 57.3 per cent,

    ○compared to women whose participation rate is only 18.4 per cent.

    ○Indian men also spend more time at paid work, spending on average 7 hours 39 minutes compared to the 5 hours 33 minutes spent by women.

  • However, when it comes to unpaid work like domestic services for household members which includes cooking food, cleaning, or unpaid caregiving like looking after a dependent child or an adult, the participation of women is very high.
  • 81.2 per cent women participate in unpaid domestic services spending an average 4 hours 59 minutes each day.
  • The participation rate of men in domestic services is low at 26.1 per cent, and the amount of time they spend conducting this service is far lesser than women, who spend around 1 hour 37 minutes while conducting this activity.
  • How do Indians like to socialize and entertain themselves?

    • A very high percentage of Indians socialize and spend their time in leisure each day.
    • However, Indians are not inclined towards participating in unpaid volunteer work, the report suggests.
    • Contrary to popular perception, men tend to participate more in socialising and communication, community participation, and religious practice than women.