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The catastrophic tsunami events in 2004 and 2011 revealed that buildings with large openings often resisted better to the hydrodynamic impact of the wave. The steel or concrete structure of the building remained intact and the upper floors could serve as shelters. Dr. Davide Wüthrich conducted a comprehensive and systematic experimental benchmark study in order to identify the effect of building openings on the hydrodynamic loadings during wave impact. A sophisticated experimental set-up was developed, which allowed to measure the dynamic forces acting on the building with a high acquisition frequency. Dr. Wüthrich used a novel methodology in order to hydraulically characterize the generated waves on a dry and a wet bed in terms of their water depths and flow velocities. Based on the experimental study, Dr. Wüthrich proposes new formulae, which allow to estimate the hydrodynamic loads on the building taking into account the effect of openings within an adapted resistance coefficient. This is an important information for designers in view of safer building infrastructures.