This research proposes a framework for designing tangibility into abstract interactions such as managing financial resources, health concerns and environmental impacts. A case study of the tangibility within cashless payments is presented, which adopted this framework to design, fabricate and test a tangible interaction in digital transactions. Digital transactions can significantly influence a consumer’s spending habits and decisions, commonly leading to increased expenditure compared to cash transactions. Several psychological mechanisms which influence conscientious spending due to differing payment methods were analyzed and employed to design a prototype incorporating a tangible interaction that is relevant to the consumer’s spending process. It is proposed that re-introducing tangibility into the payment process can increase one’s psychological ownership over their financial resources and purchased item, as well as the aversion towards paying. Results from the experiments show that the interaction enhances psychological ownership over digital currency but remain inconclusive on behavior change. The broader implications of enhancing tangibility for intangible objects is discussed.

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