For example, he has designed structures that take advantage of cardboard and other low cost materials. Following the 2004 tsunami that swept away a Sri Lankan fishing village, he developed timber and earth houses that could be easily built. Following the Japanese earthquake and tsunami of 2011 he developed shipping-container homes for those displaced by the disaster.
In one interview, Mr. Ban said that "young architects are becoming disillusioned with commercial work and instead are turning to humanitarian projects." A path young engineers can take as well, with the potential for having an equally powerful impact.