ILWIS GIS Software Migrates to Open Source

The Integrated Land and Water Information System (ILWIS, is a PC-based GIS & Remote Sensing software, developed by ITC. ILWIS comprises a complete package of image processing, spatial analysis and digital mapping. It is easy to learn and use; it has full on-line help, extensive tutorials for direct use in courses and 25 case studies of various disciplines.

ILWIS software is renowned for its functionality, user-friendliness and low cost, and has established a wide user community over the years of its development. Even after its last release in 2005, its user community remained vivid, both within and outside ITC, however without a common base for further system development.

In order to create better opportunities for the reuse and deployment of GIS functionality in a wider community, the ITC directorate has recently decided to make current ILWIS software free of charge and to migrate it as such to open source software under the 52°North initiative.

52°North is an open initiative that advances the development of cutting edge open source geospatial software. Leading research organizations in the field of geoinformatics (ifgi, conterra, ITC, ESRI) participate in 52°North’s innovative development for establishing open spatial data infrastructures (SDI) and transformation of these into practical technological solutions. 52°North uses the GPL license, which implies that newly developed software should be open source as well. More information can be found at

The migration has the following implications:

  • ILWIS software will be made freely available (‘as-is’ and free of charge) as open source software (binaries and source code) under the 52°North initiative (GPL license) as per July 1st, 2007. The current ILWIS download page ( will be directed to a page at 52°North, which will be announced in due time.
  • ILWIS support by ITC has been stopped as per January 1st, 2007.

In case you have further questions on the ILWIS migration please contact ITC’s 52°North team:

  • Rob Lemmens (
  • Martin Schouwenburg (

For questions on participation in 52°North, please contact

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