April 2011

Sleeping Time Keeps Decreasing, Male Housework Time Is Increasing

From the 2010 NHK Japanese Time Use Survey

Toshiyuki Kobayashi / Emi Morofuji / Yoko Watanabe

This is a report on the latest findings of the Japanese Time Use Survey which has been conducted every five years since 1960.

The latest survey was conducted on October 2010 on 7200 Japanese aged ten and over, with 4905 valid responses (valid response rate of 68.1%). The results include the following.

(1) Average sleep time per day were 7 hours 14 minutes on weekdays, 7 hours 37 minutes on Saturdays, and 7 hours 59 minutes on Sundays. Chronologically, sleep hours on each day of the week had been on the decrease before the decrease stopped in 2005, but the latest survey saw a decline again. Consequently, each day of the week marked the shortest sleeping hours since 1970. The decrease in the sleep time is attributed to an increase in both the numbers of those getting up early in the morning and of those staying up late.

(2) Work time per day of persons with a job on weekdays was 7 hours 24 minutes, almost the same as in the 2005 survey. Looking at percentages of those at work (ratio of doers) by hours, a time frame from 7:30 to 8:00 saw an increase while time frame from 20:30 to 24:00 saw a decrease, suggesting there is an “ongoing shift from night work to early-morning work.”

(3) The percentages of adult women doing household work (ratio of doers) were more than 90% on each day of the week, while adult men had much lower percentages; 41% on weekdays, 51% on Saturdays, and 56% on Sundays. However, the survey shows more men do housework on Saturdays and Sundays than in 2005. By age and gender, there was an increase in those who do housework on weekdays among men in their 20s, 30s and 70s.

(4) TV-viewing hours remained long, with 3 hours 28 minutes on weekdays, but the ratios of doers did not reach 90% on any day of the week. Aging of radio listeners and young and middle-age people’s “departing from newspapers” were also observed. In the meantime, regarding video, HDD, and DVD, as well as the Internet for recreation, entertainment, or culture, both the ratio of doers and use time have increased over the past 5 years, not only among young people but also among wider generations.

The NHK Monthly Report on Broadcast Research