Preliminary Design of Wind and Seismic Load Resisting Structure

Victoria University architects and collaborators have developed software that enables designers and engineers to determine the numbers and sizes of vertical lateral load resisting elements in a building and undertake structural analyses for preliminary designs.

Innovation overview

RESIST is software for preliminary structural designs of buildings for wind and earthquake loads that allows irregularly-shaped building plans, incorporates accurate torsion modelling, and complies with current New Zealand Standards.
At conceptual or preliminary design stages, RESIST facilitates investigation of different structural options and their member sizes, and aids discussion between architect and structural engineer. For use by architecture students, engineering students, architects and structural engineers, it’s unique for its user-friendliness and the absence of hand calculations.


Real-time calculations
Allowing users to explore many different structural solutions to determine one that best integrates with their overall architectural design
Easy to use
No hand calculations necessary, enables users to undertake structural analyses like an experienced structural engineer
Visual interface
Simple 3D model built from chosen input parameters
Flexible building plans
Accepts specification of irregular shaped building plans
Developed to fulfil requirements of the New Zealand building code
Extensive instructions and help pages to support users


Professional software
Fully functional software can be made market-ready with the right distribution model
Educational software
Step-by-step design and original intention for academic use make it well suited for use in teaching and training of architects and engineers

Use as professional software

RESIST has been used by architects and engineers for many years and is endorsed by professional groups such as the National Hazards Inc. Business Cluster. In its current version the software has been made available to end users on a free basis but its licence allows for commercialisation with or without further development.
While technically sound and fully functional – a complete overhaul has been carried out in 2015 – the interface could be updated to suit current operating systems, and versions for other OS developed. There also have been first explorations to offer RESIST in other countries, showcasing the potential for internationalisation of the software by adjusting it to other countries’ building standards.

Technology Diagram

Research leader

Associate Professor Andrew Charleson

Associate Professor Andrew Charleson is the Director of the Earthquake Hazard Centre at the School of Architecture at VUW. Encompassing earthquake engineering, Andrew's research interest revolves around how the structure of buildings can not just convey architectural concepts but enrich architectural quality. In an effort to support communities in developing countries, Andrew has published tutoria...

Contact person

Liam Sutton

Liam joined the Viclink team as an Assistant Commercialisation Manager on 1 April 2016. Although he only recently graduated from Victoria with a Bachelor of Architecture, Liam is no stranger to commercialisation, having started up his own business at the 2015-2016 Victoria Entrepreneur Bootcamp. Responsible for developing and formalising processes that will make the innovation pipeline more effici...

See Liam Sutton's technology portfolio