Professor Jonathan Gershuny first developed the Multinational Time Use Study (MTUS) in the mid 1970s. While working at the University of Bath with Sally Jones, Professor Gershuny developed a single dataset with common series of background variables and total time spent per day in 41 activities. The original MTUS allowed comparison of British time use data with the 1965 Szalai Multinational Time Budget Study and data from Canada and Denmark. The MTUS since has grown to offer harmonised episode and context information and to encompass over 60 datasets from 25 countries, including recent data from the HETUS, ATUS, and other national level time use projects. Professor Gershuny and Dr Kimberly Fisher presently manage the study in collaboration with other time use scholars.
This site provides access to the MTUS data and documentation, and offers advice on the use of this dataset.
We presently are overhauling the structure of the MTUS. With the next release, we will:
- Rename the W60 file to Harmonised Episode File (HEF) - the new name more clearly marks the file content
- Rename the W58 file to Harmonised Aggregate File (HAF) - the new name more clearly marks the file content
- Offer a new Harmonised Simple File (HSF). This file will cover a more limited range of person-level, household level and diary variables, and include summary time in 25 time use categories. All files in the HEF and HAF also will appear in this file. We will temporarily move all files presently included in all older versions of the MTUS into this new format, until we can upgrade the older surveys properly. We will add some new datasets only in this format.
- add Spain 2009-2010 in the Harmonised Episode File and Harmonised Aggregate File
- corrected some coding errors and added the East/West distinction in Germany 2001-02
In October 2012, we will have:
- Added Spain (Basque Country) 1992-93 in W553, W58 and W60
- Added Spain (Basque Country) 1997-98 in W553, W58 and W60
- Added Spain (Basque Country) 2002-03 in W553, W58 and W60
- Added Spain (Basque Country) 2008 in W553, W58 and W60
- Added USA 2011 in W553, W58 and W60
- Ugraded Italy 1989 from W553 to W553, W58 and W60, as well as making substantial corrections and improvements
- Ugraded South Africa 2000 from W552 to W553, W58 and W60, as well as making substantial corrections and improvements to this data.
- Ugraded UK 1987 from W552 to W553, W58 and W60, as well as making substantial corrections and improvements to this data. Additionally, we have recovered diaries collected from people aged 14-17, and from people aged 62+ who live in households that include members aged 20-61 - these diaries from ages 14-17 and 62+ have never been available in public use files prior to this release
- made corrections to some variables for retired diarists in the UK 2005 data
- Released Race and Region Supplements for newly added and upgraded surveys
In October 2011, we:
- Made minor documentation corrections to the UK 1974-75 and USA 2004-2008 readme documentation files
- Upgraded Germany 1991-92 from W553 W58 and W60
- Added the 2008-2010 USA data in W553 W58 and W60
At present we are working on upgrading the remaining older surveys from Finland, Germany, South Africa, the UK and USA, and adding surveys from Finland, Spain and the Republic of Korea.