The trend of cities, serving as a location for universities and research institutes, to take into consideration new strategies utilizing this location factor for growth-oriented urban development can also be observed in Germany. An overview of the quantitative preconditions shows that many German cities dispose of favorite preconditions for such a knowledge city strategy. An analysis of the policy arena comes to the result that the political actors are confronted with the task of a complex multi-level-policy where networking skills become essential. A comparison with the policy conditions in the U.S. makes it quite clear that especially the German universities have the status of semi-autonomous actors complicating negotiating and coordinating activities between city and science representatives. First examples of deregulation show that these hurdles can be overcome in the future.