So, this guy? He is requesting (demanding? instructing?) that our colleague "Kenneth" be added as a co-advisor to my graduate student who is working on this project. I get the sense that Dr. M feels that Kenneth needs some "incentive" to become more engaged in this research, but, both Kenneth and I agree that adding him as a co-advisor, when I am already totally in charge of the student, will have no effect, and Kenneth's lack of 24/7 participation is due mostly to the other pressing demands on his schedule and not in any way due to how he is officially listed in this grad student's academic committee.
I feel very pushed around. Selection of an advisor should be between student and advisor, and not be demanded by a third party. Right? The departmental graduate program committee chair advised me that if it's not going to pose any clear advantage to the grad student, then, we should not play games with his committee, and should leave things as they are.
At the same time, if it makes no functional difference, then we could acquiesce just for the sake of collegiality. Also, Dr. M controls the first batch of funding for this project.
Kenneth votes for appeasement. I'm torn. I'm sure the student won't care one way or the other, since it's just a matter of paperwork (and principle).
6 days ago