A scheme for the evaluation of experience of the performance of timber structures

Gerhard Fink*, Jochen Kohler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


For the future development of a safe and efficient building infrastructure, it is of utmost importance to learn from past experience. In this paper, a scheme for the evaluation of experience gained from failures and malfunctions in timber structures is developed. It is highlighted that the main motivation to analyse structural failures is to learn from them. It is therefore stated that the description of the circumstances that led to structural failures is of highest importance. This is a somewhat different perspective compared to the structuring of information that can be found in existing studies on failed and malfunctioning structures in the literature. There, the focus is on the thorough description of the physical parameters related to the failures. The result of this paper is a proposed template for failure assessment that, in its complete extension, can be downloaded from the World Wide Web. The failure template is "ready to use"; however, it should mainly facilitate further discussions on the formulation on a broadly agreed format for how the structural engineering profession might standardise failure reporting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2962-2968
Number of pages7
JournalEngineering Structures
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Failure assessment
  • Human errors
  • Structural failures
  • Timber structures


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