Formal Institutions matter a lot. In particular, the production of legislation and regulation matter a lot. Informal Institutions matter a lot. Particularly religions (mostly bad if not universally bad), Trust in one another to adhere to promises, Marriage age, marriage with inbreeding, and inheritance structures. Sizes of the different Classes matter a lot. The general problem for any people is creating a non-parasitic middle class out of any available underutilized human capital. Demographics matter a lot. As uncomfortable as it is, class structures are genetic in origin, and the more people you have below 100 (the lower your average IQ) the more difficult it will be to produce. Resources are generally a curse, not a benefit. The central problem is corruption, and only northern europeans have managed to eliminate it – and it looks like elsewhere it’s impossible.
What you won’t learn is that (a) democracy has largely been a catastrophe. (b) the european constitutional monarchies were probably the best governments ever invented. (c) modern governments are luxuries of the low hanging fruit of industrial revolution and petroleum, and will end within the next lifetime or two. (d) modern macro economics consists largely of ‘how much can we deceive people so that they keep spending money they don’t have and can’t recover’.
Yeah. It’s really like that.