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Leisure Time in Japan: How Much and for Whom?

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  • Fuess, Jr., Scott M.

    () (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)

Abstract

Japan is famous for long working hours. For decades the Japanese government has tried to influence how people spend their free time. In 5-yearly surveys since 1986, the government has surveyed "quality of life" by gauging how much time people spend daily in various "non-economic" activities. Using results from the 1986, 1991, 1996, and 2001 surveys, this study determines whether time spent daily on leisure activities has actually changed. Controlling for labor market forces, in recent years Japanese adults have not experienced more leisure time overall. They have increased time spent, one hour per week, in media-oriented leisure; this increase, however, comes at the expense of more outgoing amusements like hobbies, playing sports, or socializing with friends. There is a significant gender gap for leisure time. Shorter work schedules do encourage a more active leisure lifestyle. Leisure is directly related to regular income, but is stifled by bonus pay.

Suggested Citation

  • Fuess, Jr., Scott M., 2006. "Leisure Time in Japan: How Much and for Whom?," IZA Discussion Papers 2002, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp2002
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    Cited by:

    1. McFarlane, Adian & Tedds, Lindsay, 2007. "Work, Rest, and Play: Exploring Trends in Time Allocation in Canada and the United States," MPRA Paper 4211, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    time allocation; leisure time and working hours; country studies; Japan;

    JEL classification:

    • J20 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - General
    • J22 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Time Allocation and Labor Supply
    • J40 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Particular Labor Markets - - - General

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