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Keeping in touch – A benefit of public holidays using time use diary data

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  • Joachim Merz

    ()
    (Department of Economic, Law and Behavioural Social Sciences Leuphana University Lüneburg Research Institute on Professions (Forschungsinstitut Freie Berufe, FFB))

  • Lars Osberg

    ()
    (Department of Economics, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada)

Abstract

This paper argues that public holidays facilitate the co-ordination of leisure time but do not constrain the annual amount of leisure. Public holidays therefore have benefits both in the utility of leisure on holidays and (by enabling people to maintain social contacts more easily) in increasing the utility of leisure on normal weekdays and weekends. The paper uses the variation in public holidays across German Länder based on more than 37.000 individual diary data of the actual German Time Use Survey of 2001-02 to illustrate the positive association between more public holidays and social life on normal weekdays and weekends. These benefits are additional to the other, direct benefits of public holidays.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Research Institute on Professions (Forschungsinstitut Freie Berufe (FFB)) and The International Association for Time Use Research (IATUR) in its journal electronic International Journal of Time Use Research.

Volume (Year): 6 (2009)
Issue (Month): 1 (September)
Pages: 130-166

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Handle: RePEc:leu:journl:2009:vol6:issue1:p130-166

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Web page: http://ffb.uni-lueneburg.de/repec/leu/
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Related research

Keywords: Public holidays; social contacts; social leisure time; time allocation; time use diaries; German Time Budget Survey 2001/02;

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  1. Knack, Stephen & Keefer, Philip, 1997. "Does Social Capital Have an Economic Payoff? A Cross-Country Investigation," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1251-88, November.
  2. Hallberg, Daniel, 2003. "Synchronous leisure, jointness and household labor supply," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 10(2), pages 185-203, April.
  3. Heckman, James J, 1979. "Sample Selection Bias as a Specification Error," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(1), pages 153-61, January.
  4. Jacobsen, Joyce P. & Kooreman, Peter, 2004. "Timing Constraints and the Allocation of Time: The Effects of Changing Shopping Hours Regulations in the Netherlands," IZA Discussion Papers 1309, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  5. Stephen P. Jenkins & Lars Osberg, 2003. "Nobody to Play with?: The Implications of Leisure Coordination," Discussion Papers of DIW Berlin 368, DIW Berlin, German Institute for Economic Research.
  6. Lars Osberg, 2003. "Understanding Growth and Inequality Trends: The Role of Labour Supply in the US and Germany," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 29(s1), pages 163-184, January.
  7. Skuterud, Mikal, 2005. "The impact of Sunday shopping on employment and hours of work in the retail industry: Evidence from Canada," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 49(8), pages 1953-1978, November.
  8. Joachim Merz & Lars Osberg, 2006. "Keeping in Touch – A Benefit of Public Holidays," FFB-Discussionpaper 57, Research Institute on Professions (Forschungsinstitut Freie Berufe (FFB)), LEUPHANA University Lüneburg.
  9. Hamermesh, Daniel S., 2000. "Timing, Togetherness and Time Windfalls," IZA Discussion Papers 173, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  10. Corneo, Giacomo, 2002. "Work and Television," CEPR Discussion Papers 3373, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Joachim Merz & Paul Böhm & Derik Burgert, 2005. "Timing, Fragmentation of Work and Income Inequality - An Earnings Treatment Effects Approach," FFB-Discussionpaper 48, Research Institute on Professions (Forschungsinstitut Freie Berufe (FFB)), LEUPHANA University Lüneburg.
  12. Heckman, James J. & Lalonde, Robert J. & Smith, Jeffrey A., 1999. "The economics and econometrics of active labor market programs," Handbook of Labor Economics, in: O. Ashenfelter & D. Card (ed.), Handbook of Labor Economics, edition 1, volume 3, chapter 31, pages 1865-2097 Elsevier.
  13. Stigler, George J & Becker, Gary S, 1977. "De Gustibus Non Est Disputandum," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 67(2), pages 76-90, March.
  14. Hamermesh, Daniel S, 1998. "When We Work," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(2), pages 321-25, May.
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