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‘a single person or a group of people who have the address as their only or main residence and who either share one meal a day or share living accommodation’ (The Office of Population Censuses and Surveys). Nonrelated members are problematic in this definition, and sociologists have used two main types of household composition in discussing households:
  1. those based on the familial structure of the household, which identify the number, size and types of family in that household;
  2. those based on the age and sex structure, which identify the numbers of children, adults and, sometimes, people of pensionable age in the household.

The CENSUS uses both of these types. Different versions of the second type are used in the FAMILY EXPENDITURE SURVEY and the GENERAL HOUSEHOLD SURVEY. In the Census, the selection of the HEAD OF HOUSEHOLD is left to respondents to choose according to the criterion of ‘chief economic supporter’.

These definitions closely relate household composition to family composition, and new types of social organization, such as flat sharing, sheltered accommodation for the elderly and student accommodation, call into question the adequacy of this type of definition. Critics have also queried the usefulness of the head of household definition since it is often assumed that a man is the head of the household regardless of the social position of any women living in the same household. See also HOMELESSNESS.

Collins Dictionary of Sociology, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2000


All persons, including family members and any unrelated persons, who occupy a dwelling unit.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
Strain typing was available for 6 of the iGAS household cluster cases, 4 of which were emm 1.0 and 1 each were emm 4.0 and emm 12.0.
The insight could be supplemented by a statistically significant interaction between household cluster and city area type variables: comfortable homeowners living in the city center and respondents who live on the outskirts of Klaipeda in homes owned by themselves are 92% less likely to distrust their possibilities compared to aging homeowners living in suburban area.
Demographic characteristics and medical history among participants in household cluster investigations of DENV infection, Luanda, Angola, 2013 * Characteristic Random clusters, Case clusters, n = 26 n = 21 Households per cluster, 3 (1-7) 4 (1-12) median (range) Participants per 3 (1-13) 4 (1-12) household, median (range) All participants 247 173 Male, no.
Thus, the DENR is reportedly considering stop-gap measures like requiring large resorts and household clusters to treat at source and recycle water.
The topics include interaction structures and the development of early complex society in the region, from small household clusters to the central place of the Bogota chiefdom in Columbia, a multiscalar view on the evolution of social complexity in the Rio Parita Valley of central Pacific Panama, and household organization and communal feasts in the Panamanian village of El Hatillo.
(15) In their nationally representative cluster study, interviewers visited 89.4% of 1,086 household clusters; the household response rate was 96.2%.

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