The Network for Integrated Behavioural Science  
University of Nottingham
Capture Merle

Merle van den Akker is a NIBS PhD at Warwick Business School.  Her research investigates the effect of contactless payment methods on spending, debt, and cash usage. She examines spending recall when using contactless payments in comparison to other methods of payment.  Her research also looks at the effect of mobile payments on personal finance management.

In this YouTube video issued by WBIT, Merle talks about making paying painful again. She explains that not all payment methods are equal in causing consumers 'pain' when spending. Paying for goods/services in cash is very visible, compared to paying with cards or mobile banking apps.  Merle recommends consumers 'prime' the pain of paying before shopping, and use money-monitoring apps or mental accounting, to keep track of expenditure and avoid overspending.

Merle has presented her research at the following events:

  • CCC 2019 (an annual partnership event organised by CeDEx, CBESS and CREED) which took place 16-17 May 2019 in Amsterdam.
  • SPUDM 2019 in Amsterdam (19 August 2019)
  • NIBS Autumn Workshop 2020 (16 September 2020)
  • SPUDM 2021 in Warwick (22-24 August 2021)
  • NIBS Autumn Workshop 2021 (15-16 September 2021)

In March 2021, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) confirmed changes to its rules to allow for an increase in the single transaction contactless payment threshold from £45 to £100. The contactless threshold for multiple transactions also increased from £130 to £300.Sheldon Mills, Executive Director, Consumers and Competition said: ‘During the pandemic more people have been using contactless payments. We are changing our rules to help the industry continue to respond to the changing ways in which people prefer to pay.’

Merle also produces 'Money on the Mind' - a blog about behavioural science, and co-produces the Questioning Behaviour podcasts with fellow NIBS PhD student, Sarah Bowen (University of Nottingham).





Posted on Monday 29th March 2021

NIBS - Network for Integrated Behavioural Science

Sir Clive Granger Building
School of Economics
The University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham NG7 2RD

telephone: +44 (0)115 951 4763
fax: +44 (0)115 951 4159