WEST BERLIN—A new Academy of Science to be created here has sharpened debate about the best way to improve the quality of research carried out in the city.

On March 12 the city's parliament is expected to pass a bill introduced by the governing Christian Democrats to establish such an academy, the sixth in West Germany and the second in this divided city. (The academy in East Berlin is the legal successor of the Prussian Academy of Science, founded in 1700).

There has been talk for many years about the need to raise standards within the city's two universities and numerous research institutions, which together serve 90,000 students and 13,000 faculty. But not everybody sees the planned Academy, which will undertake research projects more actively than traditional U.S. academies, as the right solution to the problem.

Edgar Uherek, president of the city's Institute for Higher Education in Economics, said at...

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