what kinds of things do you think could possibly derail or set back the socio-technological evolution?
It's really hard to say. I don't want to sound like a determinist but it's hard to see what could stop advancing ICT. Many people say hyper-centralized government. And that is true. But if one government becomes hyper-centralized (say America) - then another government will just take over and outcompete them (say China or India or Brazil or Russia, the EU or someone else decades from now). It would take a global hyper-centralized government to stop advancing ICT and Global Brain models suggest such an entity is impossible because you need more distributed intelligence for such a stable entity (i.e., like a real brain), not less.
Of course, a human-caused disaster or the improper implementation of ICT could delay socio-technological evolution. The length of the delay would depend on the severity of the human-caused disaster.
but that "if" really stood out to me.
You're right to pay attention to the "if". We need to make sure we guide ourselves intelligently through socio-technological evolution. Drones can be used to make sure that every single person can acquire any good they want for negligible cost in negligible time; or they could be used to kill children in the developing world. We can't decide what tech will emerge (i.e., no one necessarily had control over the Internet's emergence and no one will have control over whether or not robots come), but we do have a choice in terms of how we use the emergent tech.
I remember in other posts that you have opined that perhaps government will someday be crowd sourced
The basic outline for our idea of a future governing system was published in IEEE Explore. If you can't access that I can send a PDF - but not sure how to attach a PDF here.
We need very specific control mechanisms in the next government system. It will not be 100% decentralized. Certain people will have more power and influence than others - just like today. But those people will be 100% accountable to people and the entire organization will be far more decentralized and fluid.
For a sample of my thoughts on the transition we will experience, I just posted this.