The LISEM model is an open-source geospatial modelling tool focused on simulation of physical processes on and in the Earth’s surface.


The first publication of the LISEM model was done by De Roo et al. (1994), and the further development was described by De Roo, Offermans & Ritsema (1996) and De Roo, Wesseling & Ritsema (1996). These early versions made use of Local Drainage Direction (LDD) functionality to simulate a kinematic wave for overland flow. Linked with this flow simulation were erosive and depositional processes, together with expanding descriptings of catchment-scale hydrology. Later development was continued by Jetten & De Roo (2001). Since then, the LISEM model has been extensively tested, used, extended and adapted. A variety of applications throughout the world have lead to improvements to the model. Examples can be found in the work of R. Hessel and J. Baartman. Alongside these published scientific works, numerous research reports of Msc students have contributed to the continuous development. Starting in 2014, a focus on natural hazard was brought to the model, starting with flash floods. The move towards two-phase equations was made in 2017, and integrated slope stability was added. Finally, the development of the integrated spatial modelling tool LISEM, as it is now available here, was initiated in 2020.


The main authors of the LISEM model are:

Victor Jetten - v.g.jetten@utwente.nl

Bastian van den Bout - b.vandenbout@utwente.nl

For specific questions related to the classic version, please contact V. Jetten. For specific questions related to the new version, please contact B. van den Bout.

If you plan to use this work in scientific research, a citation to a recent article on the development of LISEM would be appreciated.


This work is published under the GNU general public licence version 3. Please find a full version of this licence here: https://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl-3.0.en.html

This licence allows for free use and adaptation for non-commercial usage of the software. When distributing altered code, credit must be given to the original authors, and this licence, or a compatible licence, must be maintained. If the GNU-GPL3 licence does not work for your use-case, please contact on of the authors to explore other options.


Special thanks is given to all of the contributors to the LISEM code, and those that have otherwise helped with development.

Additionally, this work would not have been possible without the amazing efforts for free open software within the field of Geoscience and beyond. The following open-source libraries have been used in the development of LISEM.

  1. Qt
  2. GDAL
  3. OpenGL
  4. MingW64
  5. OpenCL
  7. AV Video Libraries
  8. PCRaster
  9. Angelscript
  10. GLFW
  11. FreeType
  12. MapBox Project
  13. Clipper Library
  14. Eigen
  15. OTB
  16. QCustomPlot
  17. MLPack
  18. Project Chrono
  19. PDAL
  20. NodeEditor
  21. Geostatistical Template Library
  22. Delabella
  23. CDT
  24. SW4
  25. StableFluid
  26. Single Image Example Based Super Resolution