In this study a new design equation for predicting the shear strength of monotonically loaded exterior beam column joints is proposed. For this purpose, the influence of several key variables on the behaviour of beam-column joints are inspected using results of parametric studies on an experimental database compiled from a large number of exterior joint tests. The design equation suggested has three differences from the previously proposed equations. First, the equation proposed considers the influence of beam longitudinal reinforcement ratio, which was not taken into account in previously suggested design equations. Second, as the influence of this parameter is taken into account, a more realistic estimate of the influence of joint aspect ratio is obtained. Third, the influence of stirrups is considered differently for joints with low, medium and high amount of stirrup ratios, in a way, which was not considered in previously suggested equations. The results showed that the proposed design equation predicts the joint shear strength of exterior beam column connections accurately with minimal standard deviation and is more reliable than the previously suggested equations. (C) 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.