Family Interaction, Social Capital, and Trends in Time Use (FISCT), 1998-1999: [United States] (ICPSR 3191)

Principal Investigator(s): Robinson, John P., University of Maryland; Bianchi, Suzanne M., University of Maryland; Presser, Stanley, University of Maryland


For this project, data from 24-hour time diaries probing several indicators of social capital and life quality were gathered to update prior time series on how Americans spend time. Data were collected to be consistent with time-diary collections prepared in 1965, 1975, and 1985 (see ICPSR 7254, 7580, and 9875) to allow cross-time comparisons. The survey was conducted by the Survey Research Center at the University of Maryland between March 1998 and December 1999 (effectively covering each season of the year and each day of the week) with a representative sample of 1,151 respondents aged 18 and older. Using established time-diary procedures with Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI), respondents were asked to complete "yesterday" time diaries detailing their primary activities from midnight to midnight of the previous day, their secondary activities (e.g., activities that occurred simultaneously with the primary activities), and when, with whom, and where they engaged in the activities. The project focus included the following substantive and methodological areas: (1) time spent in social interaction, particularly parental time with children, (2) measurement problems in time estimates, (3) activity and social interaction patterns of elderly Americans, and (4) time spent on the Internet and effects on social isolation and other media usage. In addition to the estimates of time use obtained from the time diaries, the project elicited information on (1) marital and parental status, education and employment status of the respondent and spouse (if married), age, race/ethnicity, and family income, (2) weekly and previous-day recall estimates of time spent on paid employment, housework, religious activities, and television viewing, (3) feelings of time pressure, and (4) use of the Internet, e-mail, and home computers.

Series: Americans' Use of Time Series

Access Notes

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DS0:  Study-Level Files
DS1:  Main Data File - Download All Files (4.716 MB)
ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup   
DS2:  Time Diary Data File - Download All Files (5.176 MB)
ASCII + SAS Setup    SPSS Setup   

Study Description


Robinson, John P., Suzanne M. Bianchi, and Stanley Presser. Family Interaction, Social Capital, and Trends in Time Use (FISCT), 1998-1999: [United States]. ICPSR03191-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2001.

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This study was funded by:

  • National Science Foundation (SBR-9710662, SBR-9710662, and Y1-AG-8364-01)
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. National Institutes of Health. National Institute on Aging

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    family life, family work relationship, housework, leisure, lifestyles, quality of life, recreation, social interaction, social life, time utilization, work

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1998-03-07--1999-12-09

Date of Collection:   

  • 1998-03-07--1999-12-09

Universe:    Adults aged 18 or older, residing in households with telephones in the contiguous 48 United States and the District of Columbia.

Data Type(s):    survey data

Data Collection Notes:

The SAS transport file was created using the SAS XPORT engine.

In addition to the 1965, 1975, and 1985 time-diary collections, ICPSR distributes two other related studies: TIME USE LONGITUDINAL PANEL STUDY, 1975-1981 (ICPSR 9054), and AMERICANS' USE OF TIME, 1965-1966, AND TIME USE IN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL ACCOUNTS, 1975-1976: MERGED DATA (ICPSR 7796).


Sample:    A simple random sample of possible telephone numbers from a One Plus List-Assisted Random Digit Dial (RDD) frame.

Data Source:

24-hour time diary survey and telephone interviews using Computer Assisted Telephone Interviewing (CATI)


Original ICPSR Release:   2001-12-21

Version History:

  • 2006-03-30 File CB3191.ALL.PDF was removed from any previous datasets and flagged as a study-level file, so that it will accompany all downloads.

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