Oh, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying the science teams would have to be Starfleet. But the crew operating the ship would be.
I don't follow, why would they have to be Starfleet?
So they can wear uniforms that visually communicate "this is Star Trek
." If we're watching a show about civlians in space, where is the link to Star Trek
so that the audience connect it to the movies and previous TV series? Creativity is great and all, but there needs to be some common connection, communicated visually since TV is a visual medium.
A Trek show about science teams would be boring.
People want action along with their exploration stories. Even the Enterprise fought the Borg between the times they did sensor sweeps.
The irony is that, science should be exploration, but you're right, both science and exploration are boring in and of themselves. The drama comes from: we discovered something dangerous that science may help us fight; or there's a culture clash between Starfleet and the civilian scientist who just came on board. Science and scientists can't inherently provide the dramatic conflict, nor are they particularly necessary to that conflict.
So, more focus on scientists and exploration is a nice idea, but won't inherently provide what the show really needs, namely conflict. You can have that conflict regardless of whether there are scientists or civilians on the show. The main benefit of civilians and/or scientists on the show is variety, because all Starfleet all the time can get boring and limited.