The earthquake-resistant design of buildings, which is prescribed in current building codes, is based on many assumptions, which are not usually checked during the design process. Such design procedures are certainly not acceptable for resilient societies of the 21st century, which are aware of natural hazards such as earthquakes, and are keen to be informed with regard to the potential risk of loss of life, expected economic losses, and other issues associated with earthquakes which may occur in the future.

The problem can be solved by introducing risk-targeted design, which, for several reasons, is a challenging task. Among others, it requires transition from linear elastic analysis to nonlinear analysis, at least in the case of important structures. In general, risk-targeted design involves the use of different types of analysis in order to satisfy a risk-based performance objective, with a reasonable utilization rate and sufficient reliability.