The challenges faced by the survivors of Japan's recent earthquake are manifold. While the gymnasiums they are being sheltered in can keep the worst of the elements out, in short supply is running water, electricity, heat, and food—not to mention privacy. The last point is significant because although Japan is a society with a reputation for being able to work well in groups, they also have a profound and well-defined sense of privacy, particularly where their personal living spaces are concerned. In Japan you simply do not swing by your neighbor's house to hang out the way you might here in the 'States, but now refugees are bundled one on top of the other.
The architect Shigeru Ban, who was been developing structures made from cardboard and paper tubes for years, is undertaking an effort to get his cardboard partitioning systems into these gymnasiums.
Read more about SBA's efforts here.