Forest management affects carbon sequestration (mitigation) and resilience of forest ecosystems (adaptation) under climate change. Therefore, the efforts to integrate these two approaches have been made by the political arrangements to seek the synergy effects and deal with trade-offs. To study the state of the art linkages and forest policies to realize both adaptation and mitigation, we systematically review the literature highlighting the topic (136 publications) and outline two different approaches from Germany and Japan as countries with substantial forest resources and high influences on international forest policies and wood trade. We identify three linkages: (1) an ecosystem (based) approach assuming that a resilient ecosystem (adaptation), has high potential as a carbon sink (mitigation), (2) a sustainable forest management (SFM) aiming for enhancing forests’ resilience and carbon sink potential simultaneously, and (3) a cross-sectoral approach generating synergies among multiple sectors of agriculture, forestry, urban design, and nature conservation. We find that a significant objective is still SFM for sustaining the forest area andwood production, where SFM examples in Germany and Japan exemplify contributions to carbon sinks and ongoing disaster risk management, respectively. Overall, the current differentiated objectives of SFM do not underpin the twofold approach and their synergy effects.