Multinational Time Use Study

The Multinational Time Use Study (MTUS) brings together more than a million diary days from over 70 randomly sampled national-scale surveys, into a single standardised format. MTUS allows researchers to analyse time spent by people in various sorts of work and leisure activities, over the last 55 years and across 30 countries. 

Jonathan Gershuny first developed MTUS in the mid-1980s. Working with Sally Jones at the University of Bath, he developed a single dataset with a common series of background variables and total time spent per day in 41 activities. The MTUS has expanded since then and offers harmonised episode and context information, including recent data from the Harmonised European Time Use Survey (HETUS), American Time Use Survey (ATUS), and other national- scale time use projects.

MTUS is currently managed by Professor Jonathan Gershuny, Margarita Vega-Rapun, Juana Lamote, Jagriti Tanwar and Teresa Harms. This site provides access to the data and documentation, and offers advice on the use of this dataset. At present we are undertaking a wholesale upgrade of the MTUS that includes removing some less used variables and adding new ones.  

MTUS is also part of a collaborative project with Minnesota Population Center and the Maryland Population Research Center, US, to provide a data extract builder designed to make it easy for users to create data files that contain the time use, personal characteristic, and household characteristics variables. This data extract builder is called MTUS-X. The data provided in MTUS and MTUS-X are perfectly compatible. Users can access MTUS-X free of charge at  https://www.mtusdata.org/mtus/ 

Funding comes from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC-UK) and from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD-US).

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MTUS Poster (871.58 KB)