Économie et Statistique n° 478-479-480 - 2015Social and fiscal measures for families - Link between diploma and professional integration - Dossier: Time Use survey
Work, house-keeping and “free” time: some of the social drivers of daily life
The way someone spends their days depends firstly on whether they are in employment or not and secondly, particularly for women, on whether or not they live as part of a couple and have children. Women perform two-thirds of household tasks. The division of house-keeping work along gender lines tends to be passed on to children, with girls being more involved than boys in household tasks. Self-employed men work more than employees and have less free time. Managers spend a lot of hours at work, but have less restrictive hours than workers or employees. By resorting to paid services, they free themselves from the most unrewarding household tasks. Workers and employees turn to low-cost entertainment such as watching television, which they find unsatisfying, video games, walks, and visiting friends and family. When they retire or are unemployed, they involve themselves in semi-leisure activities such as gardening or DIY. Although “young people” are a diverse group, the things they have in common are little time spent on household tasks, an interest in digital culture and entertainment outside the home. Older people prefer house-keeping activities, television, reading, and walking. As people age, they go from a helper to someone who receives help: time spent on household tasks decreases, while time spent at rest increases and interactions with the outside become rarer.