In the West, more people will have heard about Chess than Go.
Why learn Go?
One short answer is that Go is seen as a good source of talent for a career in Software Engineering . Go events are often sponsored by software companies seeking to recruit new talent.
A longer, more theoretic discussion of the value of Go is given in this article by the American Go Foundation
You might find these cultural representations of Go interesting.
The Surrounding Game is a feature length film about Go.