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The capacity design procedure used in New Zealand for the design of multistorey RC frames and walls of buildings for resistance against severe earthquakes is described. The aim of the capacity design procedure is to ensure that the members and joints of structures have appropriate levels of strength in flexure, shear and bond, so that appropriate detailing of longitudinal and transverse reinforcement will lead to structures with sufficient ductility in a flexural yielding mode to survive severe earthquakes. Developments in New Zealand in capacity design provisions, and in the understanding of the behaviour of reinforced concrete beams, columns, beam-column joints and structural walls during severe earthquakes, are discussed. Comparisons are made of the seismic design provisions for reinforced concrete structures recommended by New Zealand Codes and by draft Eurocode 8 for the design of building structures in seismic regions. Professor R. Park
Attempting a summary of the application of computers in structural engineering is a little like taking a photograph of a river; when the prints come back, they may tell you that it is water, but the most important bits of information are absent - the rate of flow and what the river carries upstream. D.M. Brohn
Mr J. G. Roddick (M) (formerly W. S. Atkins) Mr Cole’s article provides a most useful legal background to this subject but, in my opinion, it also identifies an ethical issue which is of fundamental importance to members of the Institution. It contrasts the expert witness’s appointment by one of the parties to a dispute with the expert’s duty to the court to be scrupulously impartial.