I am a STEM PhD student in the UK, and my advisor had given me a semi-ambitious thesis problem a couple of years back. He helped me understand the problem, helped shoot down all my wrong ideas over countless meetings, and also gave me lots of intuition about what the solution should look like. However, he hadn't cracked the problem himself. We didn't really expect my thesis to contain a solution to this problem.
Over the past few weeks, I was able to crack the problem at least partially. Should I ask my advisor to be co-author? There are multiple aspects to consider:
- Are PhD advisors generally "savvy" enough to ask to be included as co-authors when they feel they have contributed enough to a project? Is it possible that my advisor hasn't asked to be included as co-author because that's a weird question to ask one's student?
- Will my advisor feel offended if I ask to include him as co-author?
- Is it possible that my advisor will hate me if I don't ask to include him as co-author? My advisee style has always been to do just what my advisor asks, but is this the point where I should take initiative and try to give him credit for his work, even though he may not be asking for it?