An exact general solution of the following inverse problem is obtained: given a couple of beams adhe- sively bonded along a surface parallel to their axes, subject to traction / flexure load, find the unknown interface shear force. This solution is used to identify the cohesive law that characterizes the behaviour of adhesive layers subject to shear load. In order to generate data to be used to evaluate the identifica- tion methodology, three decohesion virtual tests are performed by means of detailed FE simulations. The series of tests is related to standard test configurations, and shows the correctness of the inverse solution and the efficiency of the proposed methodology, as it is more precise than the data reduction method- ologies provided by literature. If ad hoc test configurations are designed, this identification methodology can be applied to adhesion between different materials and to adhesive layers with variable behaviour.
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