Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Soil-Structure Interaction for Building Structures



Jonathan Stewart, C.B. Crouse, Tara C. Hutchinson, Bret Lizundia, Farzad Naeim, Farhang Ostadan


The purpose of this project was to develop consensus guidance for implementing soil-structure interaction in response history analyses, and to identify areas of further research that were needed. The starting point for this work was decades of available soil-structure interaction research, and recently published engineering guidance for static analysis procedures. Soil-structure interaction (SSI) analysis evaluates the collective response of three linked systems: the structure, the foundation, and the soil underlying and surrounding the foundation. Problems associated with practical application of SSI for building structures are rooted in a poor understanding of fundamental SSI principles. Implementation in practice is hindered by a literature that is difficult to understand, and codes and standards that contain limited guidance. This report represents an advancement in the state of SSI knowledge for practicing engineers. It provides a synthesis of the body of SSI literature, distilled into a concise narrative, and harmonized under a consistent set of variables and units. Techniques are described by which SSI phenomena can be simulated in engineering practice, and specific recommendations for modeling seismic soil-structure interaction effects on building structures are provided. The resulting recommendations are illustrated and tested, in detail, on realistic example buildings.
Grant/Contract Reports (NISTGCR) - 12-917-21
Report Number


NEHRP Consultants Joint Venture, ATC, Soil-Foundation-Structure Interaction, SSI, SFSI


Stewart, J. , Crouse, C. , Hutchinson, T. , Lizundia, B. , Naeim, F. and Ostadan, F. (2012), Soil-Structure Interaction for Building Structures, Grant/Contract Reports (NISTGCR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed April 21, 2024)
Created September 13, 2012, Updated February 19, 2017