I am second author of three on a recently published conceptual paper (i.e., no data). The first author is a a student I co-supervise, although the paper did not stem from his thesis but is a contribution we were invited to submit for a special issue. Authorship order accurately reflects paper contributions.
We had discussed submitting an abstract to present this paper jointly at an international conference. The submission form allows multiple presenters but one must be named as the lead. My thinking was that this should be the student, since he is first author on the paper, but that I would contribute at least 50% of the preparation. However have found out that the conference funding from my department is only available to lead presenters. The student has funding for travel to the conference regardless, as he will also be separately presenting his thesis work. He has also stated it is no issue for him if I submit the abstract as lead presenter (I would of course credit him and provide the accurate citation for the paper with him as first author, or even present jointly as per the original idea if he wants to do this).
BUT - as a relatively new academic I would really appreciate opinions as to:
Whether this is not the right thing to do even if he says he is ok with it - perhaps I should just sit this one out and leave that material to the student to present at a later conference if he chooses; and
Whether it would actually just be weird for the second author to be taking the lead on the conference presentation i.e. being the named lead presenter, particularly if the first author is also present at the conference and/or involved in the presentation?
As a little bit more context, I am interested in attending this conference for the networking and learning opportunities, and don't have anything else to submit as an alternative being so new in the job. I have previously presented all my previous work.