This paper presents a robust model updating strategy for system identification of wind turbines. To control the updating parameters and to avoid ill-conditioning, the global sensitivity analysis using the elementary effects method is conducted. The formulation of the objective function is based on M¨uller-Slany’s strategy for multi-criteria functions. As a simulationbased optimization, a simulation adapter is developed to interface the simulation software ANSYS and the locally developed optimization software MOPACK. Model updating is firstly tested on the beam model of the rotor blade. The defect between the numerical model and the reference has been markedly reduced by the process of model updating. The effect of model updating becomes more pronounced in the comparison of the measured and the numerical properties of the wind turbine model. The deviations of the frequencies of the updated model are rather small. The complete comparison including the free vibration modes by the modal assurance criteria shows the excellent coincidence of the modal parameters of the updated model with the ones from the measurements. By successful implementation of the model validation via model updating, the applicability and effectiveness of the solution concept has been demonstrated.