Shelters provided by humanitarian agencies or self-built are often of lightweight design, offering little resistance to wind loading. This implies the need to offer anchoring support, often in situations where mass cannot be supplied as the primary resistance mechanism. Unfortunately, it is unlikely that most humanitarian agencies will be able to use standard structural analysis tools or codes to determine the loading that might occur, nor to assess the resistance conditions provided by the soil. This suggests the need to: a) provide simple equations that indicate the required resistance, and b) a simple physical method of determining the likely resistance provided by any ground anchoring solution. In this article we develop such a set of equations, prove their validity against more formal methods, develop a suitable physical test protocol, and use the new method and protocol to develop a new anchoring system, which has subsequently been rolled out to provide over one million units for the shelters in the world’s largest refugee camp.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages25
Specialist publicationThe International Journal of Architectonic, Spatial, and Environmental Design
PublisherCommon Ground Research Networks
Publication statusPublished - 6 Oct 2021


  • Anchoring Systems
  • Design Tools
  • Foundation
  • Refugees
  • Resistance
  • Shelter
  • Structure
  • Wind load

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Architecture
  • Visual Arts and Performing Arts
  • Urban Studies


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