Modern seismic building design codes tend to converge on issues of design methodology and the state-of-the-art. However, significant differences exist in basic provisions of various codes. This paper compares important provisions related to the seismic design of RC buildings in some of the major national seismic building codes viz. ASCE 7, Eurocode 8, NZS 1170.5, and IS 1893. Code provisions regarding the specification of hazard, site classification, design response spectrum, ductility classification, response reduction factors, and minimum design base shear are compared and their cumulative effect on design base shear is studied. The objective component of overstrength contributed by the material and load factors is considered to normalize the design base shear. It is observed that every code has merit over the other codes in some aspect. The presented discussion highlights the major areas of differences which need attention in the process of harmonization of different codes of the world.

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