Between its establishment in 1987 and the mid-1990s, the Research Unit carried out a number of projects in which no further activity is currently taking place.

The first of these projects was Time and Consumption, which ran from 1987 until 1990. A research team investigated how the ways in which Danes spent their time had changed since the 1960s. As the project title suggests, the Board of the ROCKWOOL Foundation was also interested in an analysis of the link between changes in time use and shifts in patterns of consumption. Work in this field continued within the subsequently established research area of Families and Children, which focused on the study of conditions of life, time use, and consumption patterns among families with children. Special emphasis was placed on the conditions of life of children and young people, including marginalised individuals.

In the project on The Danish Labour Market, the results from which were published in 1992, the ROCKWOOL Foundation tackled the then massive problem of unemployment; and in the project on The Trustworthiness of Politicians, also with publication of the results in 1992, researchers elucidated the myth of Danes’ general disillusionment with their politicians.

In the early 1990s there was also a pressing need for some serious research in the field of environmental economics, and the ROCKWOOL Foundation asked the Research Unit to take up this topic. In 1995, the Research Unit published the results from Society and the Environment, a collaborative project focusing on wellbeing and the environment that was carried out jointly with Statistics Denmark. The project revealed trends in the prosperity of Danes during the period 1970-90, after correction of the consumption figures in the national accounts for consumption-promoting and consumption-inhibiting factors that are not normally taken into account in the statistics – the negative effects of pollution, for example.