The process of defining or generating a process or data structure in terms of itself. (ISO/IEC/IEEE 24765 2010)
ISO/IEC/IEEE. 2010. Systems and Software Engineering - System and Software Engineering Vocabulary (SEVocab). Geneva, Switzerland: International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC)/ Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). ISO/IEC/IEEE 24765:2010.
In the systems engineering context, recursion is used in re-application of the same standard (in the case ISO/IEC 15288) as a system is decomposed into system elements and where the elements are systems as well. The standard is re-applied for each system-of-interest (SoI) on each level.