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Toward a Framework for Time Use, Welfare, and Household Centric Economic Measurement

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  • Diane Coyle
  • Leonard I. Nakamura

Abstract

What is meant by economic progress, and how should it be measured? The conventional answer is growth in real GDP over time or compared across countries, a monetary measure adjusted for the general rate of increase in prices. However, there is increasing interest in developing an alternative understanding of economic progress, particularly in the context of digitalization of the economy and the consequent significant changes Internet use is bringing about in production and household activity. This paper discusses one alternative approach, combining an extended utility framework considering time allocation over paid work, household work, leisure, and consumption with measures of objective or subjective well-being while engaging in different activities. Developing this wider economic welfare measure would require the collection of time use statistics as well as well-being data and direct survey evidence, such as the willingness to pay for leisure time. We advocate an experimental set of time and well-being accounts, with a particular focus on the digitally driven shifts in behavior.

Suggested Citation

  • Diane Coyle & Leonard I. Nakamura, 2019. "Toward a Framework for Time Use, Welfare, and Household Centric Economic Measurement," Working Papers 19-11, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:19-11
    DOI: 10.21799/frbp.wp.2019.11
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    Cited by:

    1. Leonard I. Nakamura, 2020. "Evidence of Accelerating Mismeasurement of Growth and Inflation in the U.S. in the 21st Century," Economic Statistics Centre of Excellence (ESCoE) Discussion Papers ESCoE DP-2020-15, Economic Statistics Centre of Excellence (ESCoE).
    2. Daniel Sichel & Eric von Hippel, 2019. "Household Innovation, R&D, and New Measures of Intangible Capital," NBER Working Papers 25599, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Daniel Sichel & Eric von Hippel, 2021. "Household Innovation and R&D: Bigger than You Think," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 67(3), pages 639-658, September.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Internet; time use; measurement; welfare; household;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D11 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Consumer Economics: Theory
    • D60 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - General
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being

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