As ubiquitous technology is increasingly mediating our relationships with the world and others, we argue that the sublime is struggling to find room in product design primarily aimed at commercial and transactional goals such as speed and efficiency. We suggest a new category of products to promote deeper and more meaningful experiences, specifically those offering liminality, transcendence, and personal transformation. This paper introduces a conceptual framework and three-step design approach looking at narrative participation in design through abstractions to promote, hold and deepen more complex emotions. We explore implications from a theoretical point of view and suggest product examples for how the model might be applied in practice.

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Liedgren, J., Desmet P.M.A., & Gaggioli, A. (2023) Liminal design: A conceptual framework and three-step approach for developing technology that delivers transcendence and deeper experiences. Frontiers in Psychology. 14:1043170. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2023.1043170