This Special Feature takes the causal power of artifacts as the conceptual and theoretical lens for exploring money design and the scope for changing society by redesigning the artifact of money. The mandate of mainstream economics has been to understand the logic, operation and efficiency benefits of General Purpose Money (GPM), not to transform it, redesign it or to consider the potential benefits of Special Purpose Money (SPM). However, in interdisciplinary studies of obstacles to sustainability and how these might be addressed, the design of the money artifact should not escape scrutiny. As the pivotal role of artifacts in organizing social life is recognized throughout the humanities and social sciences, it is high time to apply this insight also to economics. A crucial research question for sustainability science informed by recent advances in the humanities and social sciences is thus: How might differently designed money artifacts impact on social and human-environmental relations? This is the overarching concern of this Special Feature.