Carola Rackete is running for the Left in the 2024 European elections – but will not join the party. In this way she wants to build a bridge between activism and politics. In an interview with multi-supervisory board member Simone Menne in the stern podcast “The Boss – Power is Female,” she says that the shift to the right in Europe motivated her to run for office. "At this moment it is important to protect left-wing institutions."
“The Boss” host Simone Menne and stern editor Laura Csapó alternately write to you on the topic of female leadership. Analysis, tips and tricks. 14 days, always between podcast episodes. Subscribe to the newsletter here.
Above all, Carola Rackete is an ecologist. After studying nautical science, she traveled to the Arctic and Antarctic several times. "To see for yourself how little sea ice there is left was frightening." Hearing from scientists that they have been publishing research results for more than 30 years and experiencing their frustration because nothing is happening made Carola Rackete an activist.
She slips into sea rescue through Greenpeace. In 2019, all eyes in the world were on her when she rescued 3 refugees with the Sea Watch and illegally entered the port of Lampedusa. In the media she is stylized as a heroine and an object of hatred by the then Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini. “Matteo Salvini fueled this personality cult around me, or ultimately created it,” says Carola Rackete about it today. And even if she loathes the personality cult about herself, the topic of sea rescue continues to move her. "It shocked and really changed me to understand that these people are not just dying in accidents, but because we make a political decision in Europe not to send state sea rescue missions there." The climate crisis will force more and more people to flee. “We have to make it possible for people to find security.”
It is also the urgency of the climate crisis that motivated her to enter politics. "We are miles away from effective climate protection." It is above all the lobbying in parliaments, including in the “lobby stronghold of Brussels”, which, from the 35-year-old's point of view, runs counter to the common good. "If we don't do it ourselves, no one else will do it for us." That's why you have to get involved. “We have no choice,” she says.
At "The Boss - Power is Female" top women talk among themselves: host and multi-supervisory board member Simone Menne (including BMW, Deutsche Post DHL, Henkel) meets bosses from all areas of society to talk to them about their lives and careers. "Die Boss" appears every fortnight on Wednesdays on stern.de and the stern's YouTube channel as well as on RTL and all common podcast platforms.
Editor's note: Stern belongs to RTL Deutschland.