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What time-use reveals about gender equality in Afghanistan?
The telling nature of time

Time-use surveys (TUS) produce statistics that reflect the average number of hours per day that people with different characteristics and in different locations spend on various activities. They are the main specialized household surveys that provide statistics on the amount of time individuals spend on unpaid domestic and care work. Furthermore, TUS capture and reveal information that goes beyond what is available from other specialized household surveys, such as labour force survey (e.g. secondary jobs) and other standard surveys. They help to paint a more complete picture of society and, in particular, the unpaid contributions of both men and women as well as the total workload consisting of both paid and unpaid work.

UN Women Afghanistan undertook an exploratory study of time use for which fieldwork was conducted in late 2018-early 2019. Data collection spanned urban and rural areas in seven provinces of Afghanistan, namely Nangarhar, Kabul, Takhar, Balkh, Herat, Kandahar and Paktia. The study was conducted by Afghans for Afghanistan Development (AFAD), with technical and financial support from the UN Women Country Office in Afghanistan. The study sets a strong foundation for an official time use survey to be conducted in Afghanistan that can inform development and implementation of policies that address gender and other economic and social inequalities.

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